The plastic wrap, which is used to keep three or four cans attached for convenience, will be entirely removed from some of the retailer’s canned vegetables.
The supermarket chain said the move will save 18 tonnes of plastic annually that cannot currently be recycled.
Waitrose’s top four best-selling staples were prioritised for plastic removal because they sell in the largest quantities. The four chosen staples are: essential Waitrose chopped tomatoes, plum tomatoes, baked beans and sweetcorn. If successful, the wrap will be removed on further canned products. Customers will now be able to buy the same cans loose but will continue to pay the lower price for buying in bulk.
Waitrose packaging manager Karen Graley said: “We know shoppers like the convenience of buying a few cans at a time as store cupboard essentials, but we want to remove single use plastic wherever we can. By selling the cans loose but at multibuy prices, we’ll be able to pass the cost saving on to customers – without passing on the plastic.”