UK water and soft drinks companies launch roadmap on packaging waste
Industry working collaboratively in a bid to see it eliminated from the value chain by 2030
An ambitious roadmap that could see packaging waste from bottled water and soft drinks eliminated from the value chain by 2030 has recently been released by The University of Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL). The Institute worked in collaboration with the Future of Plastic Packaging Working Group, which is comprised of bottled water and soft drink manufacturers Lucozade Ribena Suntory, Brecon Mineral Waters, Danone Waters (UK and Ireland), Harrogate Water Brands, Highland Spring Group, Montgomery Waters, Nestlé Waters UK, Shepley Spring and Wenlock Spring.
The producers say that the report, the first of its kind, is set out to enable and encourage other industries and countries to create their own systemic roadmaps and visions to eliminate plastic packaging waste. Key objectives include: producers to commit to all bottled water and soft drinks packaging to be made from 100 per cent recyclable or reusable material and aim for at least 70 per cent recycled material by 2025; producers and Government to investigate the optimal material of the future for bottled water and soft drinks that eliminates plastic waste while ensuring the lowest overall environmental impact; producers and Government to undertake research into consumer behaviour to support recycling ambitions towards achieving a ‘circular economy’ for bottled water and soft drinks packaging and government to create a consistent nationwide recycling system, and reinvest revenue from new policies into UK recycling, sorting and reprocessing capacity. The roadmap provides a clear timeline for working towards the ultimate goal of transitioning to a more circular economy for plastic soft drinks packaging, where plastic packaging use is reduced wherever possible and otherwise is reusable or recovered and recycled.
Says Eliot Whittington, Director of Policy at CISL said: “It is clear that the bottled water and soft drinks sectors are showing commitment to finding a solution to the plastic packaging waste problem and are grappling with the real challenges of doing so. The report we have released today with leading companies from these sectors aims to provide a clear, strategic and ambitious roadmap for transformation of their value chain in the UK, enabling real impact and action on this problem and spurring the sector forward into a new way of operating. We are now seeking to convene working groups to deliver on the four pathways set out in the report and encourage organisations and experts interested in eliminating plastic packaging waste to join them.”
Read the report here.