Lidl trials on-the-shelf smart refills
In a supermarket first, Lidl has launched a pilot that gives customers access to an on-shelf smart refill machine with ‘smart’ pouches for their laundry detergent.
The compact machines take up space equivalent to 66 standard Formil single-use bottles, but could fill over 245 individual pouches.
Designed by Chilean sustainability start-up Algramo, the machines make use of automated, touchscreen technology where customers pick up a pouch, choose their favourite detergent and follow the on-screen instructions. Innovative ‘closed-fill’ technology incorporated into the pouch cap allows customers to fill up with the cap still on, which speeds up the process and eliminates the chance of mess and spills.
In addition, the Formil pouches contain a special chip that allows the machine to distinguish between new and reused refill pouches, so the customer gets a saving of 20p after their first use. The technology will also help Lidl and Algramo to understand how many times each pouch is refilled and therefore how much packaging has been saved through the trial.
Mark Newbold, CSR manager at Lidl GB said: “We are incredibly proud of this latest innovation, which will enable our customers to save money and reduce their plastic consumption. We were the first UK supermarket to introduce smart laundry detergent refill stations and now we’re the first to introduce this next generation design.
“It’s our strong belief that good quality and value should go together. We are committed to providing our customers with cost saving solutions that can help their wallets and the planet.”
The trial will feature in Lidl’s Swadlincote, Lichfield and Kingswinford stores. This builds on an initial six-month pilot of a larger standing refill machine at the retailer’s Kingswinford store.
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