The trial will test two refill models: ‘Refill on the go’ and ‘Return on the go’ and include some of Unilever’s best-known brands.
Persil, Simple, Radox and Alberto Balsam will be available in reusable stainless-steel bottles, providing shoppers with a way to cut plastic consumption.
Unilever’s ‘return on the go’ scheme allows customers to pick up pre-filled stainless-steel bottles and return in-store once used, while the ‘refill on the go’ approach allows customers to purchase and refill re-useable stainless-steel bottles using a standalone refill machine in-store.
Designed to gain a deeper understanding of consumer behaviour towards refillable and reusable packaging, the trial – which tests different refill models, store formats and locations – is already running in Co-op’s convenience store in Wolverhampton Road, Codsall, and will extend to the Co-op store in Marsh, Huddersfield, this month (November).
Co-op’s head of format development, Ian McCutcheon, said: “We are continually working to develop new ways to provide added services and choice conveniently.
“The refillable packaging trials with Unilever are designed to test and, learn from consumer behaviour, while providing easy and quick ways for shoppers to cut their plastic consumption.
“We are facing into a climate and environmental crisis, and we need to act now to support consumers in making ethical purchasing decisions – by making it easier for shoppers to make small changes to their lives, together, we can make a big difference to our environment.”
Earlier this year, Co-op announced its 10-point climate change action plan where the retailer pledged to radically reduce the carbon that comes from its products and operations and to become a net zero business by 2040.