Our waste and recycling story

Separating out our rubbish, going to bottle banks, being conscious of recycling, is now an everyday part of all of our lives. With increasingly full landfill sites and a dwindling supply of some of the earth’s natural resources we all know we have to play our part in protecting the environment and that means not being wasteful with waste!

With around 2,500 stores, Boots takes waste disposal very seriously, so much so that we are considered one of the recognised leaders in waste management and recycling in the retail industry. Not only do we want to provide fantastic products for you but we want to also provide those products in an environmentally friendly way.

Over the years we have kept on top of industry developments in waste management and have facilities available to ensure we can always keep up with any changes in legislation.

Here are some of the things we’ve been doing to be as waste efficient as possible:

  • For the last 50 years we’ve had recycling facilities for our support office and stores at our Nottingham support office site which today recycle paper, cardboard, soft mixed plastic, glass bottles, printer toner cartridges and 35mm film cannisters
  • At our warehouses, we remove much of the packaging that any supplier’s products arrive in and simply send on the products to stores without this transit packaging, helping us to better recover, reuse and recycle materials and prevent unnecessary waste
  • All of our cross-dock centres (CDCs) are able to recycle cardboard and collect together recyclable items from stores to send back to our Nottingham support office where they can be collected by recycling contractors. We collect, sort and recycle over 22,000 tonnes of materials this way each year - more than half of all our waste produced!
  • We’ve been working with our waste contractors to identify and introduce a “dry waste recycling” system for some of our smaller stores which helps these stores recycle where it was previously impractical to do so, supporting our long term ambition to send no waste to landfill
  • Our main Burton on Trent and Nottingham warehouses, looking after our boots.com, international and UK product supply have achieved zero waste to landfill – a fantastic achievement.
  • At our Nottingham support office site the vast majority of waste that can’t be recycled is incinerated at waste facilities that reuse the heat generated to supply energy to other users in place of burning fossil fuels such as oil and gas
  • We are constantly talking to our suppliers and manufacturers about ways to reduce waste by redesigning transit packaging and we continue to encourage them to increase their recycling efforts using some of the lessons we have learnt 

We know you’re doing your bit to help our environment and we are too. Focusing on preventing waste in the first place is the very best thing we can do. Only where we haven’t yet been successful do we look to reuse and recycle and reduce our disposal to landfill sites. Our commitment to the environment helps continue to push us even further.