Major supermarket makes a big change to the way you buy milk and shoppers are all saying the same thing

WAITROSE is making major changes to how they sell milk and it left consumers all saying the same thing.

The supermarket giant is scrapping the red, blue and green milk caps for white ones, with the aim of taking better care of the environment.

In a press release, Waitrose said: "Unlike fully recyclable plastic milk bottles, coloured milk caps cannot currently be recycled back into food-grade packaging. Introducing clear caps enables retention of the material for reuse within the food sector."

Most shopping bags and food containers are made from a plastic called rHDPE. This plastic is made from recycled High-Density Polythene.

The recycled food plastic items can help to create more rHDPE from reused materials and make better for the environment.

Waitrose predicts that there will be a boost of "1560 tonnes per annum" in rHDPE availability on the market.

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The chain will now be making the change permanent with immediate effect – following a trial in April – and will start by changing the caps of the Essential Milk Range, which makes part of 44% of sales.

It will then start changing the caps of the chain's own label milk bottles, which should all have white caps next year.

The change will be across all 331 Waitrose shops across the UK.

Karen Graley, leader of packaging innovation at Waitrose said: As food businesses, we need to do more to protect our planet from unnecessary plastic waste so we're delighted to be involved in this trial."

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Milk buyer at Waitrose Lisa Oaten said: "Customer feedback during the trial has been overwhelmingly positive and this national rollout will help us achieve our goal of making more of the plastic we use circular and fir to be repurposed time and time again."

Waitrose – in collaboration with Muller – is the first supermarket in the UK to make such a change.

A trial was held between April 4 and April 30 2022 which saw all Essential Milk caps turned white in 331 Waitrose shops.

It was done with the help of dairy company Muller, which purchases a fifth of all milk produced on farms across the UK.

Muller conducted research which showed that "consumers support the change if it further improves the availability of food-grade recycled plastic material."

They also found that over half of all shoppers look at the colour of the milk cap to select which milk they want to buy.

The red cap is for skimmed milk, while blue is for whole and green is used for semi-skimmed milk.

Others either use the label to see which milk they need or remember the location of where the milk was previously placed in the fridge or use the signs on the shelves.

The study also concluded that eight out of ten shoppers are happy with having a bottle of milk with a clear cap if it helps the environment.

Not everyone was aware of the change though, and some took on Twitter to ask why such change?

During the trial in April, one person tweeted: "@waitrose Hello, it's only a little gripe in the grand scheme of things, but whose genius idea was it to replace the universally-adopted colour-coded milk bottle caps with plain white ones? A simple glance down the fridge normally, now requires removal of bottles to check."

Another person also took to social media to comment on the change and said: "Confusion reigned in the world of milk this week…what has happened to the green, red and blue tops please @waitrose and why the white tops? Has anyone asked how the cows feel about this apparent change?"

Meanwhile, another person wrote that they saw the caps in June, after the trial.

They said: "Milk in Waitrose has a WHITE cap today. How the hell am I supposed to find the right milk. #boycottwhitecapmilk"

As one of the shoppers said, this system has been adapted by many across the world.

It will be weird for some shoppers to adapt after they are used to going into the shop, choosing their milk in a split second thanks to the coloured cap, paying and leaving.

Waitrose is not the first supermarket to make a major change to how milk is sold.

Morrisons previously announced that they are removing expiration dates on their branded milk labels.

They want consumers to buy milk and then check whether it is good by sniffing it.

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Morrisons' reason behind the decision was that 85 million pints of milk go to waste because people think that they are no longer good because they are past their expiration date.

In reality, milk lasts a day or two, yet it is still wasted.

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