The Farm Retail Association (FRA) was encouraging people looking to cut down on plastic to shop at farm shops and farmers markets
Farm shops can help the public cut back on their plastic waste.
The impact of single use plastic has hit the headlines after the BBC’s Blue Planet’ highlighted their environmental impact.
And the public were being urged to shop at farm shops and farmers’ markets to help them cut back.
Rob Copley, owner of Farmer Copleys in Pontefract and Chair of the Farm Retail Association, said a huge number of ‘farm-to-fork’ businesses had traditional had less plastic packaging than supermarkets and many had increased their efforts over the last 12 months.
“Customers can just choose the produce they want and use paper bags rather than plastic,” he said.
“By reusing produce boxes and egg boxes as well as moving to paper bags, one of our members Minskip Farm Shop in North Yorkshire estimate they have reduced their own waste by 45 per cent since 2017.”
Customers were encouraged to bring their own containers to many farm shops, and some have dried goods dispensers for customers to use.
Milly Stokes at Farndon Fields Farm Shop in Leicestershire said: “We reuse all our produce boxes for customers to carry their shopping home.
“We also buy bulk dried goods and display them loose in glass jars, our customers can re-fill their own containers.
“All our deli counter items are wrapped in brown or greaseproof paper.
“We have had an overwhelming positive response from customers for our recent changes to 100 per cent eliminating single use plastic.”
Mr Copley added: “It is up to retailers to lead the way in reducing waste in store, which makes it easier for customers to reduce their own waste at home.
“As farmers and retailers, we are all about getting our produce from the field to our customers as quickly as possible and reducing waste along the way is part of our mission.”