Why Sainsbury’s, Tesco and Asda replaced cardboard egg cartons with plastic packaging


During the lockdown, many of us developed habits that we would not normally have had time for. For some it’s been exercise, others are chatting with friends online, but the country’s newfound obsession with homemade baking has caused an unlikely problem for large supermarkets including Tesco, Asda and Sainsbury’s.

Eagle-eyed shoppers in stores have noticed that some egg cartons normally sold in cardboard boxes have been repackaged in plastic.

The sudden change is at odds with recent commitments to environmentally responsible practices, but there is a surprising reason for it.

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‘We’re out of dough’

The coronavirus pandemic has taught us all to take a little more careful look at the everyday things that we take for granted.

And according to Tesco, the same practice should be applied to its packaging, which suffers from an absence of a key ingredient.

A spokesperson for the supermarket said: ‘Due to increased demand there is a shortage of dough in the UK which is used to make egg cartons.

“We are temporarily using recyclable plastic to wrap some of our six packs of eggs to ensure that we can provide customers with a constant supply of eggs.”

‘We buy millions of eggs’

Without denying that the lack of pulp was a problem in the production of cardboard egg cartons, Sainsbury’s and Asda said the blame for the introduction of plastic egg cartons was due to increased demand for eggs. .

A Sainsbury spokesperson said: ‘We buy millions of additional eggs for our customers every week as people continue to spend more time baking and cooking at home.

“We use our standard recyclable packaging whenever possible, but some eggs may be temporarily wrapped in recyclable plastic while we work to find more materials.”

Speaking on behalf of Asda, a spokesperson for the British Retail Consortium reflected Sainsbury’s position, adding: “Due to unprecedented demand for baking and home consumption, sales of eggs from supermarkets have exploded during COVID.

“There was a temporary problem with the packaging, as there simply weren’t enough boxes available to meet demand and supermarkets had to use extra boxes for a short time.

“However, as the market returns to normal, they will be phased out. “


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