Sector presents opportunity for innovation and actions focused on sustainability
Sustainable practices in supermarkets astound every day. The newest and thankful surprise comes from Thailand, where a local chain innovated on how to pack FLV (fruits legumes and vegetables) items. Consumers of the supermarket Rimping began to handle these items packed in banana leaves, eliminating the plastic that was previously used in the process. From the characteristics such as size, flexibility and heat resistance, the banana leaf was considered an ideal material, by taking into account the history of its used in the cuisine of many countries, such as in Brazil.
Another example of commitment with environmental causes comes from the supermarkets of New Zealand. There, a campaign proposed by the Ministry of Environment is now ongoing to eliminate plastic packaging for the same fresh products (fruits legumes and vegetables) at the points of sale.
Christened as “Food in the Nude”, the movement takes into consideration that vegetables are protected naturally by their own peels, thus it is not necessary to use other material to pack them.
Solutions in favor of the environment
Ecological packages begin to be seen, as well, as alternatives. A recent example is that of the Dutch supermarket Ekoplaza, which inaugurated in February 2018 a 100% plastic-free section. In Brazil, there is already a campaign conducted by the digital magazine Green.Me, aiming at conscientious and sustainable consumption, inspired on the action #DesnudaLaFruta, created in Spain with the objective of reporting the excessive use of plastic in vegetable trade.
In our country there are also initiatives to reduce the use of the material. Brazilian laboratories along with the Brazilian Agricultural Research Corporation (Embrapa) are developing experimental versions of the “bioplastic” since 2014. The idea of this research is to present alternatives for synthetic plastic and replace it in packaging, straws and tableware.