Waitrose Unpacked

What is Waitrose Unpacked

We’re all becoming more aware of the problems with plastic pollution and the harm it’s having on our environment.  So, I was so excited when I heard that Waitrose was trialling a Waitrose Unpacked in Oxford.  

But, what is Watrose Unpacked? – Waitrose have transformed their shop in Botley Road Oxford with a range of foods where they have removed the packaging or changed the packaging from plastic to a more sustainable alternative.

The test is designed to help determine how customers might be prepared to shop differently in the future. 

It has the largest number of loose fruit and vegetable lines of any national supermarket, has removed plastic wrap from its flowers and indoor plants and has launched refillable options for everything from wine to beer and cereals to coffees as well as cleaning products.

The test, which will is branded with ‘Waitrose Unpacked’ across the shop to maximise awareness, will run for a period of 11 weeks until 18 August.

Packaged equivalents of the products will remain in their usual areas to create an effective test.

For example, given the choice between buying packaged or unpackaged fruit and vegetables, which one do customers go for.

What can you expect to find in waitrose unpacked?

The ‘Unpacked’ concepts include:

  • Produce unpacked – 160 loose fruit and vegetable products will be available at the store – the most loose fruit and vegetable lines offered by any national supermarket.

  • Frozen pick and mix – Frozen mango, strawberries, blueberries, cherries, pineapple and raspberries are packaging free and will be available as pick and mix.

  • Plastic removed from flowers and plants – Plastic wrap has been removed from all flowers and indoor plants and replaced with 100% recyclable and 100% PEFC certified craft paper.  

  • Detergent and washing up liquid refillables – Waitrose & Partners is the first supermarket to partner with Ecover and provide an automatic detergent and washing up liquid dispenser where customers will be able to refill their reusable Ecover containers.

  • Wine and beer refillables – Four different wines and four different beers available on tap to take home in reusable bottles to cut down on the use of glass bottles.

  • Coffee refills – Customers can grind one of four coffees in store to take home in a reusable container to reduce glass and plastic packaging.   

  • Essential refillables – 28 products including pasta, rice, grains, couscous, lentils, cereals, dried fruit and seeds have been taken out of packaging and will be available through dispensers

  • Borrow-a-box scheme – In a UK first, shoppers can borrow-a-box from store to shop with and then take home before returning on their next visit.  

A look inside waitrose unpacked

So, rather than bore you with lots of words I thought I’d share some of the pictures I took in store when I visited the store.

Plastic Free Fruit and Veg

Plastic Free Everyday items

Veg Kitchen, Wine & Beer on Tap and Recycling Station

My Verdict

I love the new Waitrose Unpacked concept store so I’m really hoping the trial goes well as we need the big supermarkets to get on board with reducing unnecessary food packaging.

And, although this is quite a radical change for a UK supermarket it’s virtually the norm for a lot of European supermarkets especially in France.

If you’d like to find out more visit Waitrose Unpacked and you can also check them out on Instagram and Twitter under the hashtag #WaitroseUnpacked

If this was rolled out to your local Waitrose would you shop there ?

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9 thoughts on “Waitrose Unpacked A Look Inside”

  1. Oh I’ve heard about this. Not too sure if there is one local to me, but I would definitely use it if it were. It reminds me of how shopping used to be, before plastic came in to production.

  2. What a great way f buying food while saving our environment. Every market business should try this.

  3. that was an awesome idea. I love how it will help us to minimize the use of plastic plus getting used of using a reusable packaging.

  4. This is brilliant! I think we need supermarkets to make these changes, as it’s the only way customers will get on with it and do it. I think making small gradual changes we can all make a difference

  5. This is great! I don’t understand why supermarkets have to package up so many fruits and vegetables. Apples, pears, oranges, tomatoes, peppers…why? It’s possible to have things weighed, there’s no need to have them pre-packaged in plastic bags.

    1. I know, when we were in France nearly all the fruit and veg in the supermarkets was plastic free

  6. I would definitely love to shop somewhere like this. We are working on reducing our plastic usage etc and have even gone as far as to buy our own brown paper bags which we take with us when we go shopping! I really hope this is something that works out and more shops can start introducing it into their mainstream stores too.

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