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Sainsbury's to roll out state of the art recycling banks

In the footsteps of rival Tesco, Sainsbury’s confirmed its own environmental commitments as it announced its preliminary results for 2005/06 last week.

Lagging significantly behind Tesco, the recovering supermarket revealed an underlying pre-tax profit of £267 million, up from £238 million the year before.

There were no announcements of an environmental fund in the Tesco vein, but Sainsbury’s said it had “invested extensively in energy efficiency projects for many years and has recently been trialling state of the art recycling banks in six London sites”.

It plans to roll out the recycling banks to about 50 stores this year, and said it had identified 347 sites where it believed there was potential to run such schemes. The banks are able to take a wide range of material, from CDs and clothes, to plastic and glass.

Sainsbury’s also revealed its customers recycled around 100 million plastic bags through its store recycling points in the past year, and its Bag for Life was selling at a rate of 120,000 each week. By its estimates, these permanent bags save about 50 million standard bags each year.

In addressing food packaging, the supermarket said it reduced the amount of packaging used on its own-brand Easter eggs by 10% last Easter. And it was currently trialling fully compostable GM-free wrap on its organic apples and potatoes in 140 stores.

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