Drink companies to use only 100% recyclable materials by 2025

6th September 2018


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  • Food and drink ,
  • Recycling

Author

Marzena Zaborowska

Nine leading bottled water and soft drink manufacturers have today pledged to use only 100% recyclable or reusable materials in their packaging by 2025.

The commitment is set out in a first-of-its-kind report launched at the House of Commons this morning, with the companies also aiming for at least 70% of their packaging to come from recycled materials within seven years.

Highland Spring and Nestlé Waters are among the firms to develop the “ambitious roadmap” towards eliminating plastic packaging waste, collaborating with other industry leaders and wider stakeholders.

“We must make an urgent transition to a circular, closed-loop economy,” WWF UK executive director for advocacy and campaigns, Tony Juniper, said. “It is great that this group of companies have set out their willingness to act.

“Everyone has a part to play and it will require collaboration right across the board, from the designers of plastic packaging to retailers, to consumers, waste management companies and policymakers.”

Today’s report also includes a commitment from companies to seek a government mandate for consistent and industry-wide standard labeling to ensure consumer clarity on recyclability.

Moreover, firms have pledged to undertake a study on alternative bottled water and soft drinks delivery models, and seek to implement recommendations at scale where feasible.

Lucozade Ribena Suntory, Brecon Mineral Waters, Danone Waters, Harrogate Water Brands, Highland Spring Group, Montgomery Waters, Nestlé Waters UK, Shepley Spring and Wenlock Spring have all agreed.

The report, which was published in partnership with the Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership, also urges the government to comprehensively revise the Extended Producer Responsibility policy.

This should disincentivise the overuse of materials and those that are hard to recycle, while gradually incentivising minimum recycled materials to 100% by or before 2030.

In addition, the report calls for the introduction of consistent deposit return schemes across the UK, with all revenue from these new policies reinvested in recycling, sorting and reprocessing.

“If everyone rises to the challenge, especially governments, then solutions can quickly follow, reducing the appalling impacts plastic waste causes on wildlife, including whales, dolphins, turtles and seabirds,” Juniper added.

Image credit: iStock

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