By now, you’ve probably already started to think about how a reuse and refill strategy could work within your organisation. You’ll no doubt be considering the impacts and consumer needs alongside the policy drivers.

Here we take a look at a selection of people and businesses we know, as well as some newer players and interesting reuse examples. We applaud them for their efforts, helping to drive us closer to a refill revolution.

Understand the bigger picture

For an excellent global view, try the World Economic Forum’s report on The Future of Reusable Consumption Models.

The Ellen MacArthur Foundation Reuse – rethinking packaging report is also often cited as a useful framework for businesses to understand reuse models. It identifies six major benefits of reuse and maps out 69 reuse examples.

Key projects for inspiration

KIDV, the Netherlands Institute for Sustainable Packaging launched the Community of Practice Reusable Packaging, a collaborative platform for research and discussion around the implementation of reusable packaging options. Retailers, research institutes, brand owners, service providers, and start-ups are all invited and many resources are available on their website.

Upstream® was founded in 2003 by a group of Zero Waste activists in the US and Canada. They deliver superb events, great reports, and are the organisers of the Reusies Awards – check out the full list of finalists and solution providers.

Another initiative of note is The Refill Coalition, a UK-based refill trial by the multi-retailer Unpackaged, sponsored by UKRI. The trial focuses on standardised b2b refills with branded points in-store for customers to use. Berry Global are supplying the refill containers.

ClubZero, Ozarka, CauliBox, ReRe, Vytal and Dizzie all offer various reusable packaging solutions that are worth investigating.

Retailer initiatives are also diverse, and many are currently trialing in-store refills. In the UK, M&S, Waitrose, and Morrisons, and online retailers Abel & Cole and Ocado, are all working within the Refill Coalition. Asda, Sainsbury’s, Aldi, and Lidl are also currently trialling their own refill programmes.

Further afield, Algramo is working with Lider and Acuenta in Chile, trials for in-store refills are underway for Mercadona in Spain and Carrefour in France, and in Indonesia, Siklus is offering online groceries in reusable packaging.

And finally, Ecosurety has funded the Bristol Refill Cup Scheme run by the excellent City to Sea. The city-wide trial of a reusable ‘returnable’ cup scheme enables consumers to borrow a reusable takeaway cup from a café and then return it so it can be reused.

In November 2023 City to Sea and Circular&Co also published a free blueprint report for any organisation looking to set up and run a successful returnable cup scheme, with insights from the Ecosurety funded project and our own policy manager Louisa - an essential read!

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Root is a sustainable packaging consultancy supporting global brands and packaging producers. Root helps clients to use less and reduce the impact of their packaging on people and the planet by shifting their focus to a more regenerative approach.

To learn more or schedule a call with a Root sustainability expert, please visit

Tracy Sutton Root

Tracy Sutton

Founder and Lead Consultant, Root

Tracy Sutton set up Root in 2013 to help organisations use less and focus on becoming regenerative, inclusive and kinder to people and our planet. She oversees a diverse collection of specialists, handpicked to be part of the wider Root Network.

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