Ben HaywardOctober 14th
2020

UK supermarkets including Morrisons, Waitrose and John Lewis have said they are banning glitter from all their own-brand Christmas products this year.

The move comes as more and more retailers to try to reduce the amount of plastic pollution generated over the festive period.

Numerous big retail names have pledged to reduce their use of plastic recently; Boots is cutting out single-use plastic packaging from Christmas gifts, removing an estimated 2,000 tonnes of plastic from its ranges, Asda has launched its first sustainable Christmas range, and Tesco uses only edible glitter.

Sainsbury's has removed glitter from its Christmas cards, wrapping paper and gift bags and has reduced glitter used on crackers, decorations, and flowers.

Estimates suggest that as much as 12 million tonnes of plastic waste enters oceans every year, with small toxic particles ingested by creatures, harming or even killing them before moving up the food chain. 

Morrisons has also pledged to completely remove glitter from all of its own brand Christmas ranges including cards, crackers, wrapping paper, present bags, flowers, plants and wreaths, and will only include paper, metal or wooden toys in its Christmas crackers, which will be completely plastic-free, it said.

Morrisons home director, Christine Bryce, said: "Every time a cracker is pulled, or a card is opened, plastics have been used... but just the once.

"So, we've taken glitter and plastic out of our festive range this year - so that our customers can enjoy their festivities without worrying about the environmental impact."

Waitrose and John Lewis are also removing glitter from all single-use products this Christmas, with all their own-brand cards, crackers, wrapping paper and gift bags now 100% glitter-free.

Boots (where TOTUM members get 10% discount) said searches for ecologically friendly products on its website have increased by nearly a third in a year, and has introduced a new packaging recycling scheme as well as paper rather than plastic bags.

Friends of the Earth campaigner, Tony Bosworth, said: “People can still enjoy the festive season without the glitter and pointless packaging that add to the waves of plastic pollution that pour into our environment every year and threaten our wildlife.

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