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Home improvement sector pledge to cut waste and packaging

Six DIY retail giants have signed an historic agreement to reduce packaging and waste to landfill, under a new voluntary industry initiative led by the Waste & Resources Action Programme.


Wickes, B&Q, Homebase, Argos, Focus and Henkel have agreed to work together for the first time to achieve a 15 per cent packaging reduction and a 50 per cent reduction in waste to landfill by the end of 2012, against a 2007 baseline. They will also look at ways to help consumers recycle more.


The Home Improvement Sector Commitment is based on the Courtauld Commitment model. It will aim to focus on reducing packaging through improved design and dealing with problematic packaging and product areas. It also aims to make a wider adoption of re-useable systems in the supply chain and for home deliveries.


Environment Minister Dan Norris said: We need to say goodbye to unnecessary and excess packaging across the board, and its great news that such a significant industry sector has signed up to play its part.


Just like food waste and carrier bags, which might grab the headlines more often, reducing waste in the DIY sector is really important and this agreement will see a significant contribution to reducing waste to landfill.  Its great to see that the DIY industry is taking its responsibility in the war on waste seriously.


The commitment will also examine how adopting concentrated products or refillable systems could help cut packaging.


WRAP chief executive Liz Goodwin said: WRAP applauds the leadership that these companies have shown. This collective pledge by the UKs leading home improvement retailers signals a concerted and consistent approach to delivering significant reductions in packaging and waste to landfill while helping customers make positive product choices and recycle more. We encourage other home improvement retailers and brands to sign up.


Scottish Government Environment Secretary Richard Lochhead and Welsh Assembly Government Environment Minister Jane Davidson welcomed the proposals of the commitment. 

Davidson said: Whenever I talk to people about waste the most regular complaint I hear is about the amount of packaging there is on the goods we buy and use. The Welsh Assembly Government wants to see this radically reduced.


Image:
Dan Norris MP and Liz Goodwin from WRAP (front left) are joined by signatories at the launch of the Home Improvement Sector Commitment. Wickes, B&Q, Focus, Home Retail Group and Henkel have all committed to reducing packaging and waste to landfill as well as helping consumers recycle more.

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