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Supermarkets have been constantly updating their policies since the start of the pandemic. As well as making changes in store, the big chains have seen a huge surge in demand for online delivery slots as shoppers try to order their groceries directly to their door. But in response to the demand, Sainsbury’s had to make a change to the way drivers delivered the orders – and now it’s set to return to normal as lockdown eases.
Sainsbury’s has announced that it will return to bagless deliveries starting from this weekend.
The supermarket is making the change from Sunday, August 30, after pausing the policy during the lockdown.
The bagless scheme was introduced last year in order to cut back on plastic.
Previously, shoppers had to select whether or not they wanted their groceries delivered with bags during the online checkout process.
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But at the start of the pandemic, the store switched back to temporarily using plastic bags when delivering food to people’s homes in order to hand over the products quickly and safely.
However, now that the lockdown restrictions are easing, the supermarket is bringing back the eco-friendly rule.
The news means that online shopping deliveries will no longer include plastic bags, except for those used to handle raw meat and fish for safety reasons.
While drivers won’t be able to step inside customers’ homes, they will help to transfer the items into other bags or containers to help speed up the process.
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The social distancing rules mean that drivers still have to aim for contactless deliveries.
They will also be provided with hand sanitiser to use between each delivery in order to keep shoppers – and themselves – safe.
Sainsbury’s recommended that customers have their own bags or containers ready for the arrival of their delivery so make it as easy as possible.
However, the chain had special instructions for those who are still shielding in order to minimise the risk.
“If you are shielding, we would ask that you leave bags outside your door so that the driver can transfer your shopping into your bags for you,” Sainsbury’s requested.
The plastic-free scheme will be in place for both home delivery and click and collect orders.
The supermarket is still offering vulnerable customers priority access to the online delivery slots, though it has expanded the service in order to keep up with demand.
New customers are also now able to sign up for online orders, following a pause on new accounts as the chain dealt with the huge spike in demand in the last few months.
Sainsbury’s is also not the only store making decisions around its use of plastic.
In recent weeks, Morrisons announced that it would trial the removal of all “bags for life” in some of its stores.
The supermarket is providing paper bags instead, something it has been offering in store since last year.
Waitrose has also announced a similar plan for its stores later this year as it aims to reduce plastic waste.
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