This winter marks the final festive season when Ikea shoppers can purchase non-rechargeable batteries for the plethora of toys, games, and gadgets expected to be scattered around every household.
The global flat pack giant said it will only sell rechargeable batteries and will stop selling alkaline batteries for single use by October next year.
The bosses said they sold 300 million batteries worldwide last year, including 1.2 million in the UK and Ireland, and said the shift would prevent 5,000 tons from being thrown away.
The Swedish retailer said the decision was made “to inspire people and enable them to live healthier and more sustainable lives at home”.
The bosses said they made the call after seeing life cycle assessment studies showing the environmental impact of alkaline batteries compared to rechargeable nickel-metal hydride (NiMH) batteries when used in high energy products like toys, flashlights, portable speakers or cameras are higher.
According to Life Cycle Assessment studies, greenhouse gas emissions after 10 charges of a rechargeable NiMH battery are less than when using alkaline batteries to get the same amount of energy.
When around 50 charges are reached, the overall environmental impact of NiMH batteries will be equal to or less than the impact of using alkaline batteries, he added.
Emelie Knoester, Business Area Manager at Ikea Range & Supply, said, “Consumers who frequently use batteries can benefit from replacing alkaline with rechargeable batteries.
“Significant savings can be made over time – both for the environment and for our customers’ wallets.”
Caroline Reid, Sustainability Development Manager at Ikea, added, “We are on a journey to inspire people and enable them to live healthier and more sustainable lives within the confines of the planet.
“By phasing out alkaline batteries and focusing on our range of rechargeable batteries, we are taking a step on this path – offering our customers an affordable and convenient solution to extend the life of products and materials and reduce waste.”
Disposable lithium-ion button cell batteries will be on sale for products that need them, Ikea added.