Trial launched for first compost packaging recycling scheme

  • 73% of UK residents make a conscious effort to recycle 

Image © Stewart Attwood Photography 2021.

Waste-aware gardeners will now be able to recycle compost packaging thanks to a trial scheme from UK garden retailer, Dobbies.

Dobbies Garden Centres and Evergreen Garden Care are partnering on the initiative which will see garden furniture created from the recycled material and donated to Greenfingers, a charity that creates green spaces for terminally-ill children.

Launching last week, trial will run in 10 stores for an initial three months.

Most plastic packaging of the sort used for compost bags ends up in landfill because very few local authorities collect polythene sacks as part of kerbside collections or at recycling centres.

In a survey conducted by Dobbies, in collaboration with Censuswide, 73% of respondents confirmed they went out of their way to recycle*: notably 77% of females and 69% of males. Dobbies will also be encouraging more people to recycle with instore and online information to make it as easy as possible for customers.

Linda Petrons, Director of Fundraising and Communications at Greenfingers said: “We believe that time outdoors can bring significant benefits to children with life-limiting conditions. By supporting our work through their unique initiative, Dobbies and Evergreen will help us provide more children with the valuable opportunity to spend more time outside enjoying the therapeutic benefits of being close to nature.”

Marcus Eyles, Horticultural Director at Dobbies, said: “All that people have to do is bring any compost packaging, no matter what brand or where it was purchased, and return it to one of the recycling bins in our plant areas. It will then be collected by Veolia for recycling at Berry BPI Recycled Products before used as part of the raw material blend to produce garden furniture becoming a valuable asset for those children’s hospices working with Greenfingers Charity. It’s a great win for the environment, for customers and for the community, and an important next stage of our #sustainabledobbies mission.”

Jane Hartley, Sustainability Marketing Manager said: “Evergreen is delighted to be working with Dobbies and their customers. Evidence suggests that consumers want to take the right action when it comes to recycling so our new Miracle-Gro Bring Back Compost Bags bins will create strong visibility in store to encourage people to recycle. We want to reduce the amount of single use plastic used within our business and compost bags are key to delivering this, we have already increased the amount of recycled content in our compost bags which for Miracle-Gro, now contains 80% recycled content. However, we have so much more to achieve, this is the first of a number of initiatives we are working on.”

The stores included in the trial are: Woodcote Green, Altrincham, Morpeth, Cirencester, Milton Keynes, Atherstone, Keston, Brighton, Edinburgh and Milngavie.

Also in these stores are pot recycling bins, in collaboration with Elho, as well as a plastic pot and tray return service, which is available in every Dobbies store.

Follow and support Dobbies sustainability campaign using the hashtag #sustainabledobbies

For Dobbies sustainability policy: https://www.dobbies.com/sustainability-policy

For Dobbies Sustainable podcast: https://www.dobbies.com/podcasts

*Statistic obtained through combining ‘strongly agree’ and ‘somewhat agree’ answer options for question: ‘I make a conscious effort / go out of my way to recycle’ 

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