An animal hospital in Hitchin which prides itself on its green credentials has been chosen to take part in a pioneering pilot scheme to help reduce waste from flexible pet food packaging. 

Davies Veterinary Specialists is owned by Linnaeus, which is part of the Mars family of businesses, and is one of just a few sites in the UK selected for the Mars Petcare Ecosystem recycling pilot. 

Visitors to the veterinary centre, as well as those working at the practice, will be encouraged to dispose of any brand of flexible plastic pet food packaging in collection boxes on site, which can then be used to create pet related items such as dog kennels and cat hide-aways. 

The flexible plastic pet food packaging includes pouches, sachets, food bags and soft plastics, along with packaging from treats. 

It is hoped the initiative can prevent thousands of kilogrammes of pet food packaging being sent to landfill. 

Flexible plastics are not currently recyclable through curbside recycling in the UK due to limitations in infrastructure, although it is expected this may change from 2027 in select locations. 

Davies already holds a highly prestigious Green award from Investors in the Environment (iEE), the highest accolade bestowed by the organisation, for its eco-friendly work, leading the veterinary industry in a bid to promote sustainability. 

Ben Orton, hospital director at Davies, said: “It is very exciting to have been chosen to participate in this plastic pet food packaging recycling pilot. 

“The environmental and social benefits of avoiding plastic packaging being sent to landfill and incineration are huge, so we will do our best to encourage clients and staff working at Davies to recycle any flexible plastic pet food packaging that they have used.”  

The pilot scheme runs until June, after which it will be assessed on its effectiveness in collecting packaging and whether it should be scaled up across more Linnaeus-owned sites or if an alternative approach to recycling will be pursued. 

Mars Petcare, whose household brands include Pedigree®, Whiskas, Sheba®, Royal Canin® and Temptations, among others, strongly believes in making A Better World for Pets, and as part of that commitment seeks to keep the planet healthy and reduce waste. 

For more information about Davies and the wide range of specialist-led services it offers, visit or search for them on Facebook or LinkedIn

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