Asda becomes the first supermarket to join the Microfibre Consortium, which looks at reducing the impact of microplastics on the environment
With reducing plastic use high on customers’ minds, Asda has joined forces with other brands to understand and reduce the impact of microfibres in clothing – which can find their way into the ocean – by joining the European Outdoor Group’s Microfibre Consortium. The Consortium aims to fully understand the issue of microfibre shedding, how and why it occurs, and find ways for industry to reduce it.
Asda, which through its clothing brand, George, is the second biggest clothing retailer by volume in the UK, is the first supermarket to join the group, underlining its commitment to reduce its products’ impact on the environment.
Earlier this year, Asda launched its Plastic Unwrapped strategy, which committed it to looking at plastic reduction across its business. Since the launch, it has already removed 2,500 tonnes from its own-brand packaging – equivalent to 231.5 million plastic bottles – with plans to more than double this by February next year.
Laura Babbs, Sustainability Manager at Asda said: “Asda has been working to reduce the impact its products have on the environment for many years, such as voluntarily banning microbeads from our products and helping our suppliers reduce their carbon footprint through our Sustain and Save Exchange. The microfibre issue is complex and currently lacks a comprehensive research base, so it’s the right thing to do to work with other companies and share best practice that will allow us to make an industry-wide impact.”
Katy Stevens, Sustainability Project Manager at the European Outdoor Group, said: “We are delighted by the proactive and collaborative attitude of Asda to join the consortium and to help tackle this issue head on. This is a real industry wide challenge but we believe through the work of the consortium we can achieve an in depth understanding of the causes of microfibres and develop targeted solutions across the whole garment lifecycle.”