Tesco is the first supermarket to sell water in cans rather than plastic bottles.
The retailer is now offering spring water in 500 millilitre aluminium cans at its 700 stores under the CanO Water brand, which started two years ago in London.
These are less harmful to the environment than plastic bottles, which can take hundreds of years to break down into ever smaller pieces which infiltrate the food chain.
While plastic can only be recycled five to ten times because the quality degrades each time, aluminium cans are ‘infinitely recyclable’.
“Aluminium cans have the highest recycling rate of any product out there and a recycled can could be back on the shelf as another one in just 60 days,” says CanO Water co-founder
He hopes that his cans will rival industry giants, while their minimal design and cult social media following will attract a younger generation.
Plastic bottles are a major component of the truckload of plastic entering the ocean every minute.
Major source of plastic pollution
A Greenpeace investigation last year found that the six biggest companies in the soft drinks sector sell well over 2 million tonnes of single-use plastic bottles a year, of which just 6.6 per cent are made from recycled material.
Britain, meanwhile, works its way through 13 billion plastic bottles a year – a significant portion of which are used for water.
Tesco’s move to sell tinned water comes in the week after Iceland became the first supermarket in the UK to sell plastic-free chewing gum – making it from tree sap instead.
Although most people don’t realise it, the primary ingredient in the vast majority of chewing gum sold in the UK is ‘gum base’ (a non-biodegradable substance made from synthetic polymers, or plastic) as well as a range of chemicals to soften and texturise the product.
Iceland is now selling Simply Gum, a biodegradable product from the US made from sap called chicle, taken from the sapodilla tree, which is native to central America. It costs £2 for a pack of 15.
This article originally appeared on our sister site, iNews