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Tommies buckets switch to recycled plastic

Greenco has made its snack veg brand more sustainable, a move welcomed by partners Jumbo and The Greenery

Tommies buckets switch to recycled plastic

Pictured (l-r): Robert Ketelarij, Greenco; Ton van den Hoek, Jumbo; and Jan Walta, The Greenery

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Dutch supplier Greenco has switched all of the plastic used in its 500g Tommies snack vegetable buckets to recycled, reusable material, a move which it says helps it to remove 42 tonnes of plastic per year from its contract with supermarket chain Jumbo alone.

Last year, Greenco converted three other lines it supplied to Jumbo – Tommies Mini Toppers, Tommies Good to Go Tommies snack veg cups – to the fully recycled plastic known as rPET, which is reckoned to produce 70-80 per cent less CO2 compared with conventional PET plastic.

In total, it said, around six million PET bottles would have previously been recycled every year to make the packaging required.

Jumbo, Greenco and major Dutch produce marketer The Greenery have been working closely to wean the Tommie range off packaging made from virgin plastic, apparently with the support of the Dutch Sustainable Packaging Knowledge Institute (KIDV).

Greenco chief executive Robert Ketelarij said he was proud of the company's commitment to making its packaging more environmentally friendly. “The choice for sustainable packaging fits in seamlessly with our ambition to become the leading player for sustainability in horticulture."

"Corporate social responsibility is our guideline for sustainable growth," he added. "We continue to innovate and collaborate with partners from within and outside our industry to ensure that everyone can enjoy healthy snack vegetables."

Ton van den Hoek, senior fruit and vegetable manager at Jumbo, said the supermarket chain was eager to minimise packaging waste and reduce the size of its plastic footprint.

"We are constantly looking for ways to reduce packaging or make it more sustainable in close cooperation with our suppliers," he commented. "We are therefore delighted that our regular snack vegetable supplier Greenco is now offering all its Tommies snack vegetables in sustainable packaging."

Jan Walta, key account manager for Jumbo at The Greenery, also welcomed the move. “We strive for a chain that is as sustainable as possible. Packaging plays an important role in this. We are proud to collaborate with progressive growers such as Greenco who are constantly innovating in the snack vegetable segment and are pleased with the cooperation with Jumbo to make the chain more sustainable. These efforts contribute to a sustainable society."

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