Many people are not aware that every retailer in the country is obliged to take back all unwanted packaging on a product if requested. Much as I would love to see queues of shoppers armed with scissors at the supermarket checkouts, I know this is never likely to happen.
Instead I am offering my customers here an alternative. I am doing what I believe every retailer should be doing, that is to reduce all excess packaging wherever possible. I have taken things to an extreme maybe, but even most of my egg boxes are at least secondhand and some have date stamps on them going back months because customers keep on returning them over and over again.
Practically everything sold in this shop is without any packaging at all. Any packaging that we do use, we will be glad to take back and send off to our suppliers to be reused, whether it's egg boxes, honey jars or even strawberry punnets. If they cannot or will not reuse it (like that daft wrapping they keep putting on cucumbers) I believe it is only appropriate that I, as an environmentally responsible retailer, should arrange for its disposal.
This is one of the huge benefits of sourcing locally on a small scale from independent growers – they can get direct feedback from customers and retailers without scores of middlemen in between.
It's complete madness to keep wrapping fresh produce in plastic. It's a terrible way to store it. Everything from pears to potatoes releases moisture over time so they 'sweat' in plastic containers. It's bad for the produce, it's bad for the environment and evidence suggests it's bad for the consumer – many polyurethane wrappings gradually release toxins over time and very close proximity to fresh produce could be hazardous if ingested over several years (see this site for more information). This is irrelevant of course to the sort of retailer who demands a seven day shelf–life for a strawberry and doesn't actually care about the long–term health of their customers – that's just not a cost–effective policy (and every little helps!).