Automated Refill scheme launches in Milton Keynes ASDA

Customers can buy and refill bottles from innovative product-dispensing stations located in-store

Thursday, 18th November 2021, 4:49 pm
Updated Thursday, 18th November 2021, 4:50 pm

Eco-conscious customers can now purchase a range of popular personal care and cleaning products in reusable stainless steel bottles at Asda in Milton Keynes.

Sustainable cosmetics company Beauty Kitchen, in partnership with manufacturer RBC Group and Unilever, have launched an automated Refill scheme for personal care and cleaning products at the ASDA Supercentre in Bletchley on Thursday (18/11).

The launch marks the fourth UK location for the ‘Re’ programme set up in a year with the initiative aiming to create user-friendly solutions for plastic-free packaging. It's hoped it will encourage residents to reduce their carbon footprint by switching to refills for their beauty, personal care and cleaning products and reduce plastic waste.

The new eco refill scheme was introduced at Asda in Bletchley on Thursday (18/11)

Customers will be able to purchase empty, stainless steel ‘ReBottles’ directly from innovative product-dispensing iRefill stations located in-store, and fill them on the spot with a range of popular Unilever products, paying at checkout as usual.

When finishing the product, the same stations can be used to either refill, or return empty bottles in exchange for coupons enabling customers to get their next ReBottles for free. To help customers looking for a quicker, similarly eco-friendly alternative to filling their own bottles, prefilled ReBottles (which can also be returned at the iReturn stations) will also be available on-shelf.

Jo-Anne Chidley, co-founder of Beauty Kitchen and Re said: “Our goal is to democratise the circular economy. By designing packaging to be circular and smart alongside advanced Refill and Return Stations, we are making it accessible for consumers to reduce their plastic consumption, track their impact, and change their behaviour from one of consuming packaging to reusing it.”

To further motivate sustainability-oriented individuals to take part, RBC Group have developed a QR code-based smartphone application — ReVo — which will allow users to keep track of their bottles and accumulate points.

For every five bottles a customer refills or returns, Re have pledged to plant a tree in their name, thus maximising each participant’s impact. Through this programme, Beauty Kitchen are pioneering a Reuse Revolution by introducing refill solutions that are not only sustainable but also scalable and convenient for the general public.

With the groundbreaking Refill and Return stations — designed and manufactured by technology experts RBC Group — Re is truly paving the way for a sustainable future, and leading the fight against single-use plastics. The programme is a key component in Unilever’s bid to halve virgin plastic use by 2025, and it will be expanded to more ASDA and Co-op stores across the UK in the coming months