Plastic waste is such a high-profile issue that hardly a day goes by without a new announcement or commitment from government, or from the communities of manufacturers and retailers.
Many independent retailers are not just on-trend with plastic reduction but are actually leading the way, and you can find packaging-free and refillable products in a lot more local c-stores than in the multiple chains. But they can only go so far on their own, and many of the retailers who have started down this path would like to go further and faster, only to find the lack of availability of suitable products in the supply chain is holding them back.
Younger consumers are growing up with an environmental agenda and genuine concerns about the future of the planet. And more legislation is heading our way in the form of Deposit Return Schemes and further bans on single-use plastics in certain products, so this is not an issue that is going to go away any time soon.
The public want retailers to embrace plastic reduction, and I believe most retailers recognise this demand and want to do something constructive about it. But we still have a long way to go, so there remains a big opportunity for manufacturers and distributors to make commitments not just on their own, but to ensure that plastic reduction is tackled in a joined-up way throughout the supply chain.