Boots has been criticised for using plastic bags for some of its prescriptions, despite a national push away from the pollutant.
The issue was raised earlier in the week by Newbury MP Richard Benyon, who wrote to the beauty and pharmacy chain on Twitter: Why have you gone from paper bags for prescriptions to plastic bags? I mean really WHY?
He said that several people had mentioned the issue to him and suggested it would go down really badly with customers.
It comes less than a year after Boots announced it had signed up to the UK Plastics Pact to tackle plastic waste and make a fundamental change in the way we design, produce, use, re-use, dispose and reprocess plastics.
Twitter users were unimpressed, with one saying the business should get some sense of civic responsibility and another suggesting shoppers use pharmacies that do give a damn about the planet and global warming.
Another said: They need to take responsibility for the waste they produce.
Deputy Labour Party leader Tom Watson was also among the critics, writing: Turning from paper to plastic to save costs is not an acceptable way to run a business these days. Your customers are rightly livid and baffled.
But in a statement supplied to Sky News, Boots said the move was not a cost-saving measure.
A spokesperson said plastic was used for prescriptions dealt with by the chain’s centralised pharmacy and these accounted for less than 8% of our total dispensing.
They said: Our centralised pharmacy uses bags that are 100% recyclable.
These bags mean that we can deliver medicines to patients in a way that is safe, clean, dry and durable.
For the last few months we have been looking at alternative packaging options that have the same qualities, and we will move to these as soon as we can.
This takes a little time as machines need to be made and commissioned that will work safely and effectively.
The majority of prescriptions are still dispensed in paper bags, they said, adding that they had achieved a reduction in plastic use across other departments such as this year’s Christmas and food ranges.
(c) Sky News 2019: Boots defends use of plastic bags for some prescriptions