Dutch Supermarket Adds 'Plastic-Free' Grocery Aisle

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Dutch Supermarket Adds 'Plastic-Free' Grocery Aisle

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A popular Dutch supermarket chain says it’s ditching plastic on more than 700 items sold in its store. The “plastic-free” supermarket aisle will include a variety of food from grains and cereals to sauces, chocolates, fruits and vegetables.

The aisle at Ekoplaza was dreamed up by the environmental group, A Plastic Planet, which calls the supermarket’s move a “landmark moment” in the ongoing battle against plastic waste and pollution. The concept will roll-out to all 74 locations over the course of the year.

“For decades shoppers have been sold the lie that we can’t live without plastic in food and drink. A plastic-free aisle dispels all that,” A Plastic Planet co-founder Sian Sutherland said in the Independent. She called on the UK to follow suit as the country has just taken steps to ban plastic straws.

“Finally we can see a future where the public have a choice about whether to buy plastic or plastic-free. Right now we have no choice.

“There is absolutely no logic in wrapping something as fleeting as food in something as indestructible as plastic.

“Plastic food and drink packaging remains useful for a matter of days yet remains a destructive presence on the earth for centuries afterwards.

“Ekoplaza has set an example that the UK’s supermarkets must follow at the earliest opportunity. Our biggest supermarkets must introduce plastic-free aisles urgently.”

Plastic waste has been linked to numerous problems for marine life -- from the giant floating garbage patch in the Pacific Ocean to plastic microbeads finding their way into marine animal diets.

While Ekoplaza may be the first supermarket to dedicate an entire aisle to plastic-free goods, it’s not the first store in the world to embrace the concept. Zero-waste markets have been popping up in cities including Brooklyn, Berlin, Vienna, and Barcelona.

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