M&S ditches plastic plastic for minibite cake range

British retailer, Marks & Spencer, has swapped out black plastic for semi-clear natural colour tubs for its range of minibite cakes, to make them more recyclable.

Thanks to the change, the 1080ml tub made by packaging manufacturer Berry Superfos, for a range of cakes produced by Park Cakes, can now be described as ‘widely recyclable’ in the UK. This indication signifies that the packaging is collected by 75% or more of local authorities across the country.

The user-friendly tub for M&S minibite cakes has been a fixture on-shelf for over a decade. The new-look pack has replaced the carbon black tub and lid with a semi-clear natural colour, which matches M&S’s commitment to ensure that all plastic is widely recyclable by 2022.

On-shelf the most obvious change is the lid, while the tub artwork design made with in-mould labelling is unchanged.

Nick Shaw, packaging manager at Park Cakes, is part of the team sparking the change and running the packaging project together with Berry Superfos, drawing on the packaging solution provider’s knowledge about recyclability:

“Using a plain semi-clear natural colour instead of a black one is in itself a fairly simple measure, yet it has a tangible positive impact on the environment,” he said. “We have taken a huge amount of non-recyclable plastic out of the waste stream and in addition, we have reduced the weight of the tub.”

According to Park Cakes, as well as this important sustainability benefit, the project has also proved to be a cost-neutral solution. In addition, both Park Cakes and M&S are pleased with the final result in terms of on-shelf presence. Shaw said that a number of people think the pack looks cleaner and brighter, has a punchier appearance, and looks just as good as with the previous black plastic.

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