Coles Scraps Plastic Toys Giveaway in Nationwide Sustainability Drive

As part of its mission towards sustainability, zero waste, zero-emission, and zero hunger, Coles Group has launched another initiative across its stores nationwide, including Toowong, to reduce its impact on the environment.

Starting 25 Jan 2021, Coles has committed to stop giving away plastic toy collectibles in its marketing campaigns under its “Together to Zero” initiative. As a result, they have dropped two popular programs with Little Shop and Stikeez as these no longer align with their goals for sustainability. 

“While very popular, we must listen to our customers who say their priorities are changing,” the Coles Chief Marketing Officer Lisa Ronson said. 

“In a recent survey of 9,000 of our customers, reducing waste to landfill and plastic packaging was the number one concern when it comes to environmental issues in retail, with 69% of those surveyed saying it was of high importance to them.

“We know that customers will understand the need to ensure our campaigns are more sustainable for future generations. We are proud to be now using our marketing platforms to raise awareness of our sustainability ambition which is focussed on acting together now for generations of Australians ahead.”

In line with this, Coles has also removed 31 million soaker pads from meat trays that will no longer end up in landfills. The company will also shift to 100% recycled packaging for its instore bakery in the 2022 financial year and has been working with the Australia, New Zealand and Pacific Islands Plastics Pact (ANZPAC) to develop recyclable, reusable, or compostable containers by 2025.

Photo Credit: Supplied

The move follows after Coles Group also scrapped sales of single-use plastic tableware products when “Together to Zero” launched in early 2021. 

Ms Ronson added that the Coles Group has ambitious plans to become the “most sustainable supermarket” in Australia” and are coming up with ways to deliver innovative items down to its packaging.

“We are ensuring it’s contributing to the circular economy by being produced with recycled content where possible, as well as being recyclable.”

Clean Up Australia Chairman Pip Kiernan said that Coles Group has been “true to their word” and taking conscious steps in becoming Australia’s most sustainable supermarket. 

“We are really encouraged to see Coles making meaningful changes to all parts of their business,” Kiernan said.