Glasgow-based wholesaler puts environment and human health concerns ahead of profit.
Starting this summer, Co-operatives UK member Greencity Wholefoods will no longer supply water and soft drinks in single-use plastic bottles.
Scotland’s largest organic wholesaler is making the move because of the growing evidence of the damage that plastic is causing to the environment and human health. Recent studies have shown small particles of plastic in the human body as well as significant amounts in the water supply.
"We still believe strongly in these values and feel the time is right to make these changes. This will have a financial impact on Greencity, but as a worker owned co-operative, everyone took this decision for the benefit of the environment and people’s health." Craig McCormack, Greencity Wholefoods
The food and drink sector is arguably the worst offender, and the team at Greencity think that it is time to change.
From 31 May (2018), the the green-friendly supplier will no longer be sourcing soft drinks or water in single-use plastic bottles. Once their existing plastic stock is sold, they will be asking their customers throughout Scotland and the North of England to choose a glass, can or other alternative.
The worker co-op was set up 40 years ago to offer people good value, healthy wholefoods. Greencity co-op member Craig McCormack said: “We still believe strongly in these values and feel the time is right to make these changes. This will have a financial impact on Greencity, but as a worker owned co-operative, everyone took this decision for the benefit of the environment and people’s health.
“We would like to reduce plastic waste across our entire product offering, but at this moment it is not possible as some parts of the sector have no alternatives to plastic. In the last year we have worked tirelessly to increase our range of drinks to enable our customers to source alternatives that are easier to recycle.”
The leader of the Scottish Green Party, Patrick Harvie MSP, said: "Greencity has a long track record of putting environmental principles to work within their business, but with the growing level of scientific and public concern about plastic pollution it’s right that every organisation looks at how they can improve their practice.
"This new step, of taking single-use plastic bottles out of their product range, is very welcome and I hope that other businesses will take it as a prompt to see how they can help address this issue too."