15m and counting: Doncaster firm leads the way with world first meal tray recycling

Meal delivery business in Doncaster, Wiltshire Farm Foods, has been making a real difference to the planet with the help of its customers, by collecting and recycling meal trays through its world-first, closed-loop system.
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After just two years of operation, and in support of WRAP Recycle Week (which is celebrating its 20th anniversary), the ready meal provider has announced it has now recycled over 15 million of its trays nationwide within this closed-loop recycling process – the first ever of its kind on an industrial scale.

This innovative service for its customers involves collecting washed, used trays directly from customers and sending them back to a specialist recycling facility in Durham. Here, they are recycled into brand new trays which are then distributed back to the company for use.

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Chris Davies, Retail Sales and Operations Manager at the site in Doncaster, is proud of the positive environmental efforts the company is making and the high engagement seen from local customers, saying:

Tray being washed.Tray being washed.
Tray being washed.

“Our customers thoroughly enjoy taking part in this process, with many of them comparing it to when the milkman used to collect their empty milk bottles! We know that they feel reassured in the knowledge that they are doing the right thing for the environment to support future generations.

“We’re proud to be playing our part in this pioneering initiative and hope to keep encouraging even more of our customers to take part.”

Staggeringly the latest RECOUP Household Plastic Packaging Collection Survey showed that around 47 per cent of plastic placed into household recycling is then sent abroad for processing with uncertain results. Comparatively, Wiltshire Farm Foods guarantees that 100% of the trays collected back will be recycled into brand new trays here in the UK, leaving no room for uncertainty for its customers.

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This commitment to protecting the environment remains a key priority to the company, especially with its packaging, leaving its customers with 97 per cent less packaging than other ready meal brands.

Chris concluded: “We believe it’s the right way to do business and we know our customers agree with us and support our sustainability values.”