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Coca-Cola trials labelless Sprite bottles in UK
FoodBev Media

FoodBev Media

30 January 2024

Coca-Cola trials labelless Sprite bottles in UK

Coca-Cola will temporarily remove labels from its Sprite and Sprite Zero on-the-go bottles in the UK this month, in a limited trial of labelless packaging. The pilot will see labels removed from single 500ml Sprite and Sprite Zero bottles, replaced with an embossed logo on the front of the pack. Laser-engraved product and nutritional information will appear on the back of the bottles. Consumers will be able to find the new limited design at eight Tesco Express stores in Brighton and Hove, Bristol, London and Manchester between January and March 2024. While existing labels are fully recyclable, removing them simplifies the process for consumers, eliminating the need for separation from the bottles during recycling and reducing the amount of packaging used overall. Like existing Sprite packaging, the bottles – made from recycled PET – feature green and transparent attached caps, identifying them as Sprite or Sprite Zero respectively. Dusan Stojankic, VP of franchise operations, Great Britain and Ireland at Coca-Cola Great Britain, commented: “We want to help create a future where plastic drink packaging will always have more than one life. Labels contain valuable information for consumers, but with the help of technology we can now trial other ways to share this information while reducing the amount of packaging we use.” He added that while going labelless seems like a “small step,” it is one of several ways the company is exploring to minimise the impact of its packaging on the environment. Other design changes rolled out by Coca-Cola in recent years to help reduce packaging waste include turning Sprite bottles from green to clear plastic for improved recyclability, and introducing attached caps to its bottles. This ensures the cap stays connected to the bottle after opening, aiming to reduce potential for littering. Javier Meza, VP of marketing at Coca-Cola Europe, described the trial as a “milestone” for the industry, adding that it could lead to a “big shift” from a marketing perspective, with potential to contribute to longer-term changes in the way brands communicate with their consumers.

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