Waste management company TerraCycle said today it has expanded its "Loop" reusable packaging initiative into the U.S. and will support home delivery of containers for consumer packaged goods (CPG) through agreements with retail giants The Kroger Co. and Walgreens.
Loop's "circular e-commerce platform" relies on parcel carriers such as UPS Inc. to provide home delivery and pickup services of durable containers holding dozens of consumable products such as shampoo, laundry detergent, toothpaste, orange juice, breakfast cereal, and kale snacks.
The goal of the program is to reduce the waste caused by single-use plastics by applying a "milkman model," according to Trenton, N.J.-based TerraCycle. Just as milk and dairy vendors once served American shoppers by delivering fresh products to their homes—and picking up the used milk bottles to be cleaned and reused—Loop will follow a similar model with modern products.
In the 21st century version of that scheme, Loop provides reusable shipping totes and containers that can be customized with brand-specific, durable packaging. When consumers are finished with the product inside, they return the package so it can be collected, cleaned, refilled, and reused, thus creating a circular shopping system, the firm says.
On Tuesday, Loop said it has launched a pilot program in the Mid-Atlantic region of New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland, and Washington D.C. In addition to the launch of the platform, Loop also unveiled a real estate partnership with Brookfield Properties to offer the shopping platform first in New York as an amenity to employees at Brookfield Place (BFPL) in Lower Manhattan and then to residents at One Blue Slip at Greenpoint Landing in Brooklyn.
Consumers can access the service by shopping online at www.thekrogerco.com/loop, www.walgreens.com/loop, or www.loopstore.com. After placing an order, they will receive their durable products in Loop's shipping tote, which also serves as a returns container to hold the empty containers from their previous order, the firm said. Loop will thoroughly clean the packaging so that each product may be safely reused, and will replenish products as needed to the consumer.
"Loop was designed from the ground-up to reinvent the way we consume by leveraging the sustainable, circular milkman model of yesterday with the convenience of e-commerce," Tom Szaky, the founder and CEO of both Loop and TerraCycle, said in a release. "TerraCycle came together with dozens of major consumer product companies from P&G to Nestle to Unilever, the World Economic Forum Future of Consumption Platform, logistics and transportation company UPS, and leading retailers Kroger and Walgreens to create a simple and convenient way to enjoy a wide range of products, customized in brand-specific durable and reusable packaging."
We are so excited to expand Loop and be able to reach as many people as possible while making waste-free shopping a breeze. If your area is not yet on our map, stay tuned to our page where we will announce all future expansion plans! #LiveinLoop #sustainability pic.twitter.com/1frr2njBG3— Loop (@LoopStore_US) May 1, 2019