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Filling & Packaging 07/13/2017

Coca-Cola European Partners Great Britain unveils new sustainable packaging strategy

Coca-­Cola European Partners unveiled its new GB sustainable packaging strategy – setting out an ambition for its GB business unit to work with local and national partners to recover all its packaging so that more is recycled and none ends up as litter.

Coca-Cola European Partners Great Britain unveils new sustainable packaging strategy
photo: CCEP

Coca-Cola European Partners unveiled its new GB sustainable packaging strategy – setting out an ambition for its GB business unit to work with local and national partners to recover all its packaging so that more is recycled and none ends up as litter.

At present, only 70 % of the cans1 and 57 %2 of the plastic bottles used each year are recycled, CCEP believes these figures should be higher. Through its new GB sustainable packaging strategy, the company sets out the key actions it will take, and the areas where it will look to work with others, to improve the recovery and recycling of drinks packaging, and to reduce littering in Great Britain.

The new strategy is focused on three key areas:

  1. Continuing to innovate to ensure its packaging is as sustainable as possible
    CCEP has built a strong track record of lightweighting, ensuring all its cans and bottles are 100 % recyclable, and using recycled materials. It now wants to build on its work, with plans to double the amount of recycled plastic in every one of its PET bottles over the next three years – from the current average of 25 % to 50 % by 2020. To achieve this ambitious target it will continue its long term partnership with Clean Tech, which operates Europe’s largest and most advanced plastic bottle reprocessing facility in Lincolnshire, supporting the circular economy in Great Britain and allowing recycled bottles to return to shop shelves as part of new packs in as little as six weeks.
  2. Investing in consumer communication to promote recycling and encourage behaviour change
    As part of the new strategy, Coca-Cola will use the power of its brands to inspire more consumers to recycle. Later this month, the company will launch a multi-million pound communications campaign designed to inspire more people to recycle. At the heart of the campaign is an advert called Love Story, which will break on TV at the end of July and run across TV, cinema and digital channels. The advert features two love struck plastic bottles who are parted and then reunited as they are disposed of properly, recovered and then recycled into new bottles. The campaign will reach 35 million Britons by the end of this year. The company will also be putting a new recycling message on bottles this year and promoting recycling to six million people at festivals and events.
  3. Championing reform of the UK recycling system to ensure more packaging is recovered and recycled
    The company will continue to work in partnership with others – including the Governments of Great Britain – to improve the current packaging recycling system. To support the growth of the circular economy in Great Britain, the company will champion well-designed new interventions that have the potential to increase packaging collection and recycling rates, including stronger recycling targets, deposit return schemes and extended producer responsibility.

In addition, as part of its commitment to support DEFRA’s new working group on voluntary and economic incentives to reduce littering, CCEP will seek to advance its own knowledge of how consumers are motivate by an incentive-based scheme by testing an on-the-go bottle collection and reward programme. This test will examine the behavioural impact of reward schemes and help inform any future national approaches to reducing litter and increasing collection and recycling rates. More details on these trials will be announced later this year.

1 70 per cent of cans recycled – Alupro.org.uk
2 57 per cent of plastic bottles recycled – Recoup UK Household Plastics Collection Survey 2016

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