Sandwich chain starts trial of plastic bottle deposit return scheme in Brighton stores
Sandwich chain Pret A Manger has launched a new range of branded reusable water bottles as the latest part of its strategy to cut waste across its business.
In recent weeks Pret has focused on encouraging its customers to use reusable cups for takeaway hot drinks, doubling the discount available to consumers who use their own cups to 50 pence.
Now it wants customers to think twice before buying a plastic water bottle, and has this week unveiled a partnership with bottle brand Chilly's that will make reusable bottles available to buy in selected stores.
Customers will be able to buy a reusable bottle and refill it at filtered water stations inside the sandwich chain's stores. The insulated bottles, which cost £20, keep drinks cold for 24 hours and hot for 12 hours.
"Plastic bottles are a problem," Pret CEO Clive Schlee said. "We all feel it even before we hear the shocking statistics about millions of tonnes of plastic ending up in our oceans each year. I'm thrilled that we've partnered with Chilly's to create a range of reusable bottles and I hope our customers love the designs as much as we do."
Meanwhile, Pret is also trialling the UK's first plastic bottle deposit return scheme in three Brighton stores. Shoppers will pay an extra 10 pence for a plastic water bottle from these stores, which they will be able to claim back when Pret-branded bottles are returned to store.
If the two-month scheme is successful Schlee has indicated it will be rolled out across Pret stores nationwide later this year.
Only around half of the tens of millions of plastic bottles used in the UK every year are currently recycled, compared to more than 90 per cent of bottles used in countries with DRS schemes such as Denmark and Germany.
Pret's move comes as the government is preparing to consult on and launch a national deposit return scheme for plastic bottles, glass bottles and drinks cans later this year, as part of its promise to eliminate unnecessary plastic waste by 2042.
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