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Morrisons Milk to Swap Plastic for Cartons

Supermarket giant Morrisons is making an innovative move to switch all its branded milk from plastic bottles to paper-based cartons.

With sustainability at the forefront of everyone’s minds, larger companies are doing their bit in the bid towards a greener, more sustainable future.


A First For Supermarkets

From mid-February, nine types of Morrisons fresh milk have started being sold in Tetra Pak Cartons. This is a move that will save 100 tonnes of plastic a year, “Fresh milk is currently one of the single biggest users of plastic packaging in UK Supermarkets. It accounts for approximately 10% of all plastic used.” Morrisons stated.

Morrisons is the first supermarket in the UK to make the move from plastic to cartons. It’s not just their milk making the switch as fourteen of Morrisons’ nineteen fresh juice products have also switched from plastic to carton packaging.

The positive move from plastics to cartons has been supported by explanatory point-of-sale materials flagging the move.

Tetra Pak Packaging

Dairy Category Director at Morrisons has commented, “Fresh milk is the top user of plastic packaging in our stores so this will result in significant plastic reduction.” He also said that Tetra Pak has also been independently verified as a better sustainable packaging option. If customers take it, they could be looking at moving all their fresh milk to Tetra Pak cartons.

The new cartons can be recycled at kerbside and recycling centers “in most UK regions.” The carbon neutrality of the cartons has been certified by the Carbon Trust. Customers’ top concern, according to Morrisons, is reducing the amount of single-use plastic in stores.


The company, which operates nearly 500 stores across the UK, has committed to a 50 percent reduction in primary plastic packaging for its brand by 2025. An astonishing commitment and, if achieved, will be an incredible example for all other supermarkets in the UK to aspire to and aim for.

Tetra Pak’s goal is to create “the world’s most sustainable food package,” with cartons made entirely of responsibly sourced renewable or recycled materials that are fully recyclable and carbon neutral. After all, 74% of paper and 83% of paper-based packaging is recycled into new products, making it one of the most recycled materials in the world. [Cepi, 2020 + Eurostat, 2018]

Less Plastic for a Better Future

Morrisons have stated that as well as keeping the milk fresh, the packaging is made from sustainably sourced FSC® certified trees, and other controlled sources such as Bonsucro certified sugar cane. The sugar cane is used in the very thin layer of plastic coating, as well as the twist caps. These cartons being mostly paperboard, are made of more than 80% less plastic (*results are as per comparison vs. 4 pints HDPE bottle in the UK) than the average milk bottle you are probably used to seeing in the fridges in your local supermarket.

So, the next time you are out shopping for your weekly groceries, why not keep an eye out for milk that comes in a paper carton? After all, it’s easier to store, made from more sustainable materials, and all-around better for the planet.


  2. Cepi, 2020 & Eurostat, 2018

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