Elopak has achieved a lot in the past decade in terms of sustainability, including a significant reduction in greenhouse gas emissions and environmental improvements to its packaging products and processes.
“Our job is to ensure that food waste is minimised. Our mission is to do that based on sustainable materials, and renewable materials while at the same time with the minimal footprint that we can have,” said Thomas Körmendi, CEO of Elopak.
Partnerships for global goals
Elopak’s focus on the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) features in the company’s film launched in 2019.
The UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) seek to foster a sustainable development globally reducing social inequalities and greenhouse gas emissions. SDG consists of 17 goals with a total of 169 targets, also known as the «2030 agenda». SDG has become the main framework on which countries and companies base their sustainability strategies and targets.
“WWF works with the corporate sector, because if you are part of the problem then you are part of the solution. The Sustainable Development Goals are key for us not to do business as usual. Here in Norway we have engaged with Elopak about their long-term strategy, making sure that it benefits both people and planet,” said Karoline Andaur, deputy CEO of World Wildlife Fund in Norway.
Elopak’s sustainability milestones
Elopak has an ambitious sustainability strategy and works with key sustainability issues across various parts of the organisation, meeting significant milestones. A recent achievement is to be the first packaging company to have an ongoing commitment recognised by the Science Based Target initiative, contributing to limit global warming to 1.5 °C. This latest breakthrough follows a stream of significant sustainable goals met by the company.
Responsible raw material sourcing has been high on the agenda since the members of ACE (Alliance for Beverage Cartons and the Environment) signed an industry self-commitment in 2007. The commitment was to source 100% wood fibres from legal and acceptable sources by 2015 and securing chain-of-custody certification of all production sites by 2018 (including Joint Ventures). Elopak reached both goals in 2015.
“In Elopak we focus on circular economy which is really using products and keeping products and raw materials in the loop as long as possible,” said Marianne Groven, sustainability director of Elopak.
In 2014, Elopak launched the first 100% renewable carton replacing fossil polymers with renewable ones based on organic waste. In 2017, it further improved the offering by changing to a feedstock based on residues from the forest, giving a beverage carton 100% from the forest. During 2018, Elopak reported sales of 1 billion fully renewable beverage cartons.
Elopak joined the global RE100 campaign in 2015, committing to sourcing 100% renewable electricity. This was achieved in 2016 by purchasing Guarantees of Origin (GO) and Renewable Electricity Certificates (REC). This led to a significant reduction in company emissions with a 70% reduction in absolute emissions over the 10-year period from 2008 to 2018.
In 2016, Elopak became a carbon neutral company and today Elopak offers carbon neutral Pure-Pak® cartons to all its customers.
Science based targets
Elopak committed to Science Based Targets (SBT) in 2018, further increasing focus on reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Science-based targets are set to keep the average global temperature increase below 1.5 degrees according to the Paris Agreement.
Additionally, recently together with its industry peers Elopak established a new organisation, EXTR:ACT, to drive increased beverage carton recycling in Europe.
Thomas Körmendi, CEO of Elopak said: “Our responsibility is really to ensure that food is packaged safely and within minimal waste…. that’s what we as Elopak are committed to doing.
“Sustainability is not something we do, but rather something we are.”
© FoodBev Media Ltd 2019