Co-op removes all plastic packaging from its 2021 Christmas gifting range

12 November 2021

Co-op has announced the launch of its plastic free Christmas wrapping paper range. The ethical retailer has removed the plastic film from around the rolls of Christmas wrap and saved almost a million pieces of plastic as it continues its commitment to sustainability, removing unnecessary plastic from its packaging and products.

Christmas 2021 gifting range

Co-op has been at the forefront of removing plastic and unnecessary packaging, replacing plastic stems from cotton buds before any other retailer almost 15 years ago and removing black (so called ‘vanity’) plastic from shelves in 2019.

Research by GWP Group* shows consumers in the UK will use 227,000 miles of wrapping paper each year and that over 1032 miles of this will end up in waste bins. Co-op’s new look Christmas wrapping paper is fully recyclable and provides a sustainable alternative to combat the huge amount of waste.

The full gifting range, including crackers, cards and accessories which are also 100% recyclable, with all ribbons changed to a cellulose based plastic free material and bag handles and cracker contents being changed to paper or a more sustainable option.

Co-op has also developed new packaging for its premium range, Irresistible Chocolate boxes**, which have had all plastic packaging removed, and now features a new cardboard tray.

Simon Robinson, Product Developer at Co-op said “Last year we made great strides to reduce our use of plastic in our Christmas range, and this year we have gone above and beyond, with plans to launch the most sustainable gifting range in 2022. We’re looking forward to a Christmas that will hopefully be a little more normal and the gift of giving will be back in full swing.”

In July, Co-op announced the launch of Europe’s most extensive in-store recycling scheme for plastic bags and product wrapping. Recycling units for ‘soft’ plastics have launched in over 1,500 stores 2,300 stores by November. The initiative ensures all Co-op’s own food packing is easily recyclable by establishing an accessible disposal route for materials which are unlikely to be collected by UK councils, including: crisp packets, bread bags, single-use carrier bags and bags-for-life, lids from ready meals and yogurt pots, biscuit wrappers and pet-food pouches.

Notes to Editors

Further information: Maya Powell Co-op Press Office E:

Research by GWP Group last updated Oct 2021.
*Co-op’s Irresistble Free From Irresistible Chocolate Box will have updated packaging in April 2022