Skip to content Skip to sidebar Skip to footer

K-Group commits itself to actions aimed at reducing the consumption of plastic bags

The K-Group contributes to the effort to reduce the amount of plastic litter that ends up in water bodies and elsewhere in the natural environment. In its commitment to The Society’s Commitment to Sustainable Development published today, the K-Group commits itself to actions aimed at reducing the consumption of plastic bags.

HELSINKI, Finland, 2016-Nov-01 — /EPR Retail News/ — In The Society’s Commitment to Sustainable Development, different operators pledge themselves to promoting sustainable development in their work and operations. Kesko joined The Society’s Commitment and published its first two commitments in September 2015.

The objective of Kesko’s third commitment is to reduce the consumption of plastic bags in K-stores. In the background of the objective are the voluntary actions agreed by the Ministry of the Environment and the Finnish Commerce Federation to ensure that the targets for the reduction of the consumption of plastic lightweight carrier bags set in the EU packaging waste directive are achieved also in Finland. Kesko is committed to the EU’s target that the annual consumption is no more than 40 plastic bags per person by 2025.

Aim is to increase the share of alternative shopping bags

At the beginning of 2017, retail plastic bags will be subject to a charge at all K-Group food stores, building and home improvement stores, agricultural and machinery stores, as well as furniture stores.

By the end of 2017, thin small bags will no longer be on display at the checkout line. They will be handed out on request for covering a wet bouquet of flowers or a package of meat with juice dripping out, for example.

Kesko provides alternatives for plastic bags in its selections: reusable bags, cotton bags and jute bags, as well as paper bags and recycled plastic bags. In the spring of 2017, circular economy bags manufactured by Amerplast Ltd will be added to the choice. Plastic waste returned by households to the Rinki eco take-back points is used in their manufacture.

Active communications in customer channels and stores are used to increase the awareness of the environmental impacts of plastic waste, reduce the consumption of plastic bags, increase the use of alternative solutions, such as reusable bags, paper bags and cotton bags, as well as increase plastics recycling.

Material solutions to replace PVC and micro plastic particles to be removed from own brand cosmetic products

In accordance with its plastics policy statement, Kesko promotes the recycling and reuse of plastics. Kesko creates operating models that prevent plastics from ending up in water bodies and elsewhere in the natural environment.

The chlorine, stabilisers and phthalates contained in polyvinyl chloride, or PVC, are estimated to cause significant environmental and health impacts. Kesko is seeking replacement material solutions for PVC, especially for product or packaging materials that are difficult to recycle, or that are used for a short time. The packaging of those Kesko’s own brand products that currently contains PVC will be replaced by an alternative material by the end of 2016. The use of PVC as the material of Kesko’s gift vouchers will be discontinued within 2017. The aim is to replace the material of Plussa cards with a PVC free material within 2017.

Small micro plastic particles contained in cosmetic products pass through waste water treatment plants into water bodies risking to end up in food chains and household drinking water. Kesko will remove micro plastic particles from its own brand cosmetic products within 2017. Kesko’s selections do not include oxo-degradable plastic bags or small bags because they fragment into micro particles.

Further information:
Matti Kalervo, Vice President, Corporate Responsibility, Kesko Corporation, tel. +358 50 306 4081,
Timo Jäske, Sustainability Manager, Kesko’s grocery trade, tel. +358 50 529 2028,


EPR Retail News