SIX SHOPPING trollies were filled with plastic in a first campaign of its kind in Bognor Regis.
The waste was placed in the containers by shoppers in response to the presence of members of the area’s #returntheplastic group at the Tesco store in Shripney Road.
The large quantity of unwanted wrappings was handed over in just three hours last Saturday.
David Meagher, the group’s leader, said: “The local initiative was a success to the extent that local shoppers asked us if we could be there every week collecting the plastic from the items they had just bought.
“Tesco helped us to find a prominent spot outside the supermarket where we asked shoppers if they would like to remove their plastic wrappers from items they had just bought, for the store to recycle.”
The group of residents who usually collect waste washed up on the beaches got together to form the group in response to the start of the movement in Frome, Somerset.
Their intention is to get over the message that single-use plastic is largely unnecessary and that the country needs to reduce the amount it uses and then has to recycle.
Some of it cannot be re-used and can end up in landfill sites where it takes hundreds of years to decompose.
“Shoppers were so pleased we were offering a way of getting rid of their plastic, that soon they were removing the nets holding fruit, plastic trays, plastic wrappers and bags which held fruit and vegetables and placing them in our trollies.
“One customer took several minutes to remove the shrink wrapping from a cucumber,” said Mr Meagher.
He thanked managers at the Tesco store for helping the cause.
He said the company appeared to making the shift to more sustainable wrapping and bags by providing unbleached paper mushroom bags and larger sturdy brown paper bags with a bigger capacity.
The group planned to visit a different store around Bognor Regis and Chichester at the start of each month to repeat the exercise, Mr Meagher added, and raise further awareness of the matter.