Sainsbury’s Scottish So Organic whole chickens are now being sold in compostable trays instead of plastic in Scottish stores, which it claims is the first of its type for fresh meat – as it seeks to cut packaging waste.

Made from sugar cane the packaging can be thrown straight into the compost heap or bin where it will decompose naturally in around eight weeks.

James Laws, Sainsbury’s regional sourcing manager for fresh foods in Scotland said: “More of our shoppers are becoming increasingly aware not only about where their food is produced and supporting local producers, but also have concerns on landfill and deterioration of the environment.

Environmentally-friendly packaging is high on our agenda and with this new generation of compostable packaging we will significantly reduce the amount of plastic which threatens the Scottish environment. Over 7000 organic chickens are sold every week in Sainsbury’s in Scotland and more than 100,000 Scots own a compost bin. This packaging could save 9t/year of packaging going to landfill.”

The launch comes on the back of the commitment Sainsbury’s made in 2006, when they announced that, ‘more than 500 of its own-brand products will be sold in compostable packaging.’

This joint venture between Grampian Country Food Group, Sainsbury’s and supplier Natura ASP, has taken over two years to develop and implement into stores.