Supermarket chain Iceland Foods has launched a trial to reduce plastic packaging across a range of fresh produce by 93%.

The move is part of the company’s commitment to eliminate plastic from own-label products by the end of 2023.

Iceland will introduce the new initiative in two phases.

During the first week-long phase, the retailer will offer new plastic-free packaging or packaging with low plastic content for 38 fresh fruit and vegetable lines across its 33 stores in London and the South East region.

Fresh produce such as apples, mixed peppers, potatoes and carrots will be included in the initial phase.

The second phase of the trial will be launched on 4 March and include the second plastic-free banana packaging trial that initially failed. The retailer will launch new fixtures for bananas.

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Iceland is planning to eliminate at least 7t of plastic during both trails.

Iceland Foods managing director Richard Walker said: “We understand that consumers are particularly aware of the amount of plastic being used to package produce across the industry and we have been working hard to develop user-friendly sustainable alternatives. The trial is truly scalable and our findings will help to further define our strategy for eliminating plastic across our produce offering.

“Most importantly, customers will not have to pay a premium for the plastic-free or reduced plastic products as prices will remain exactly the same, and we are proud to be democratising choice in this way.”

Iceland operates more than 950 stores across the UK along with an online shopping service.