Coles drops plastic collectible toys as part of sustainability campaign

Chris Pash
By Chris Pash | 23 July 2021

No more Little Shop or Stikeez.

Coles, in its journey to be more sustainable, has decided to stop giving away plastic collectible toys.

The supermarket chain launched a national campaign to celebrate its sustainability strategy under the pillars of “Together to Zero” and “Better Together”.

The campaign, created by DDB and starting this Sunday, highlights Coles’ aspiration to zero waste, zero emissions and zero hunger and encourages all Australians to work together to ensure Australia is a better place for future generations.

It will initially launch with a 60 second TV commercial, followed by a series of 30 second commercials, digital executions and outdoor advertising to raise awareness of sustainability initiatives.

“Together to Zero” was first unveiled in March, when Coles announced emissions targets including a commitment to be 100% powered by renewable electricity by the end of the 2025 financial year.

Coles recently stopped selling single-use plastic tableware.

CMO Lisa Ronson says collectible toy programs such as Little Shop and Stikeez have been popular with customers in the past.

However, they no longer align with Coles’ sustainability ambitions or with customers’ preferences and priorities.

“Coles has been in the lives and homes of Australians for more than 100 years and our unique position in Australia comes with responsibility,” says Ronson.

“As part of our Together to Zero mission, we’ve been reviewing our marketing campaigns through a sustainability lens," she says.

"While very popular, we must listen to our customers who say their priorities are changing."

In a survey of 9,000 of Coles customers, reducing waste to landfill and plastic packaging was the number one concern when it comes to environmental issues in retail, with 69% of those surveyed saying it was of high importance to them.

“We are proud to be now using our marketing platforms to raise awareness of our sustainability ambition which is focussed on acting together now for generations of Australians ahead," says Ronson.

"We are on a journey and understand our responsibility to minimise our environmental footprint and to show leadership in protecting our planet and climate.

“Our ambition is to be Australia’s most sustainable supermarket which means we need to be committed to reducing unnecessary plastic, and this extends throughout our business.

"We are committed to innovating when it comes to packaging so that where we can’t eliminate packaging and plastic, we are ensuring it’s contributing to the circular economy by being produced with recycled content where possible, as well as being recyclable.”

Pip Kiernan, chairman of Clean Up Australia, says Coles is being true to their word that they want to be the most sustainable supermarket in Australia.

"It's simple steps together with our millions of volunteers that powers Clean Up Australia," says Kiernan. 

"We are really encouraged to see Coles making meaningful changes to all parts of their business." 

As part of its pledge to make packaging more sustainable, Coles has also removed 31 million soaker pads from meat trays this year. 


Have something to say on this? Share your views in the comments section below. Or if you have a news story or tip-off, drop us a line at

Sign up to the AdNews newsletter, like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for breaking stories and campaigns throughout the day.

comments powered by Disqus