M&S customers complain as firm's cafes quietly ditch free biscuit with cup of tea in bid to cut down on food waste

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Marks and Spencer customers have complained after the chain decided to scrap the free biscuit which used to come with hot drinks at the chain’s cafes.

The department store has justified the decision by saying it is trying to minimise food waste, and that many people threw their biscuits in the bin.

However, rather than praising the store’s environmental credentials, customers have reacted with outrage on social media.

One complained on Twitter: “Marks and Spencer what’s with the stinginess with the free biscuits in your cafes now? Two different M&S cafes and no mini treat with my coffee.”

Another added: “M&S used to give you a little free biscuit with a tea. But, of late, my saucer is bare.”

 M&S defended its decision, and added: “The free biscuit is still available, our customers just need to ask. This is an effort to improve food waste as we’ve found a lot of customers don’t eat the biscuit.”

For those who want to enjoy the oat biscuits at home, the supermarket sells them in its food halls in packs of 22 for £1.

Consumer expert Sue Hayward told the Mail on Sunday: “M&S is caught between a rock and a hard place on this one. It’s saving waste by stopping automatically dishing out free biscuits, but facing complaints from customers who are moaning that they can’t get a free biscuit.” 

Marks and Spencer recently came under fire for plastic wastage after giving out free toys to children.

Earlier this month, customers criticised the promotion, which gives away miniature plastic versions of the company’s 25 most shopped items have been turned into miniature collectables in a campaign called Little Shop.

One Twitter user wrote: “Can you explain? I have seen that they can be recycled into kids benches but why make them in the first place?! Stop using unnecessary plastic just to get sales! It’s utterly disgusting and HAS TO STOP.”

M&S responded by saying the company is “committed to reducing our use of plastic packaging and reusing or recycling any we do use”.

It added: “Little Shop collectables have all been designed to last and we’ve worked hard to ensure around a quarter of them are made from FSC (Forestry Stewardship Council) certified card where possible. We’ve also ensured all single-use packaging is made from paper instead of plastic.”



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