John Lewis Launches £1 Million Fund To Reduce “Throwaway Culture”

On Monday, the John Lewis Partnership launched a new £1 million fund which will award cash to projects that are working on ending the “throwaway culture” of retail.

The £1 million fund was raised from the department store’s sale of 10p plastic bags and will give out grants ranging from £150,000 to £300,000 to eligible projects. For one year, the new Circular Future Fund will provide for projects that “demonstrate trailblazing, scalable innovations that can accelerate the transition towards a more circular economy,” the John Lewis Partnership said.

The John Lewis Partnership is calling on innovators who are challenging the throwaway mindset of most retailers to apply for the grants, seeking projects across organisations such as charities, social enterprises, start-ups, and young businesses. It is aimed at projects in areas including textiles, food, and household products.

Climate change, biodiversity loss, waste and pollution are unquestionably among the biggest challenges we will face in our lifetime and tackling them will require a different kind of thinking,” Marija Rompani, Director of Ethics and Sustainability at the John Lewis Partnership said

By creating this fund, we’re hoping to unearth some of the world’s leading innovators, who have built their business models, products and services around the concept of circularity. We live in a world of finite materials and we need to start protecting them before it’s too late. This is why we’re particularly looking for projects that are regenerative and can eliminate waste or pollution from the design stage and ultimately protect nature.”   

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