Loblaw Cos. will be the first Canadian retailer to implement the Loop reusable packaging system.
Canada’s largest food and drug retailer said Thursday that it plans to pilot the Loop solution in Toronto starting early next year. In the test, participating consumers will be able to order select products from national brands and Loblaw’s President's Choice private label online and have them delivered to their homes in reusable containers.
The news comes about two weeks after Loop unveiled partnerships with The Kroger Co. and Walgreens, the first U.S. retailers to employ its reusable packaging platform. Loop said it has launched its U.S. program in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland and the District of Columbia.
Loblaw's pilot will include President's Choice products with Loop packaging.
"There is too much plastic waste. Our industry is part of the problem, and we can be part of the solution," Loblaw Executive Chairman Galen Weston said in a statement. "Our partnership with Loop is a powerful example of entrepreneurial innovators working with like-minded large enterprise to bring a meaningful solution to a real problem."
Loop is a circular online shopping platform developed by Trenton, N.J.-based waste management firm TerraCycle. Products available via the Loop platform come packaged in branded, reusable glass or metal containers and are shipped directly to consumers in a specially designed tote bag. After use, consumers place the empty containers into the Loop tote and go online to schedule a pickup. The products are collected free from their homes and then are cleaned, refilled and reused.
Loop said consumers in the Toronto pilot area who are interested in participating can go to www.buydurable.com to leave their contact information so they can be notified when the test officially launches and apply to take part.
"With its operational scale and its commitment to environmental sustainability, Loblaw is the perfect partner to bring Loop to Canada," said Tom Szaky, founder and CEO of Loop and TerraCycle. "Together, as we bring back the milkman model of yesterday, rebooted to reflect the convenience of today, we will help to eliminate the idea of waste and bring a better product experience to consumers."
Brampton, Ontario-based Loblaw has a retail network of 2,424 stores, including 550 corporate-owned supermarkets, 1,339 associate-owned drug stores and 535 franchised grocery stores.
In the U.S. Loop pilot with Kroger and Walgreens, participating customers can shop more than 100 products — including food, beverages, health and beauty care, and nonfood items — that were redesigned with brand-specific, durable containers. Consumer packaged goods (CPG) companies taking part include Procter & Gamble, Unilever, Nestle, PepsiCo, The Clorox Co., Colgate-Palmolive, RB (Reckitt Benckiser) and SC Johnson. Also, in May, Loop and French food retailer Carrefour announced the launch of a similar test serving Paris.