Woolworths has defended its plastic packaging for sweet potatoes, after literally thousands of angry customers blasted the supermarket chain on social media.
Shopper Leanne Stokan rallied support from irate shoppers after sharing a picture of the product stacked in rows to the Woolies Facebook page on Saturday.
“Why??? Woolworths, we, your customers, don't want this. Our planet doesn't need it,” she wrote.
“Sweet potatoes can go from your shelf to my trolley to my kitchen without ever needing to touch a plastic bag, let alone a plastic tray as well!!!”
The picture has been liked 69,000 times, with almost 5,000 shares and over 3,000 comments from people throwing in their two cents on the issue.
“Nothing angers and frustrates me more than seeing this waste,” wrote one customer, while another said: “If you also supply sweet potatoes in loose format and they survive fine then there is no reason to wrap them in plastic and then plastic again.”
Others chose to defend Woolies, with one writing: “People have nothing better to do with their time then to complain.”
On Monday, a Woolworths spokesperson explained that “efforts” were made to use the plastic packaging “as as efficiently as possible”.
“When considering new recyclable packaging options, we need to ensure that it meets our existing food safety standards, product integrity requirements, and that it
sustains the appropriate shelf life of our products to reduce food waste,” they wrote.
Here’s the full statement from Woolworths:
“Hey Leanne, the packaging we use is designed to preserve the product throughout the supply chain and we make efforts to use our packaging as efficiently as possible.
“As such, many of our packaged produce lines are also available in loose format.
“When considering new recyclable packaging options, we need to ensure that it meets our existing food safety standards, product integrity requirements, and that it sustains the appropriate shelf life of our products to reduce food waste.
“We’ll continue to work with our suppliers to actively pursue packaging alternatives that reduce the amount of packaging or increasing its recyclability where possible.”