Several leading bottled water and soft drinks manufacturers have lodged a report to the UK House of Commons, which outlines their ambition to eliminate packaging waste in the bottled water and soft drinks value chain by 2030.
The roadmap was developed with input from companies such as Lucozade Ribena Suntory, Danone Waters (UK and Ireland), Nestlé Waters UK and Highland Spring Group, and in conjunction with The University of Cambridge Institute for Sustainability Leadership (CISL).
The plan includes a pledge to ensure that all bottled water and soft drinks packaging will be made from 100% recyclable or reusable material by 2030, and an aim to achieve at least 70% recycled material by 2025.
Also proposed is a joint effort by producers and government to investigate the “optimal material” that could be used for packaging in the future, which can simultaneously eliminate plastic waste while ensuring the lowest overall environmental impact.
Producers and government would also undertake consumer research as part of the plan, in order to establish the recycling habits of consumers to support recycling ambitions and ultimately achieve a circular economy for bottled water and soft drinks packaging.
The proposals also call for the government to create a “consistent nationwide recycling system”, and to reinvest revenue from new policies into UK recycling, sorting and reprocessing capacity.
Kinvara Carey, general manager at the Natural Hydration Council, said: “Our members, along with Lucozade Ribena Suntory, commissioned CISL to help us create a collaborative roadmap to eliminate plastic packaging waste from the bottled water and soft drinks sectors.
“Our members are committed to leading this work and playing an active role in achieving these important goals, and finding solutions to the problem of plastic packaging waste so that none of the packaging ends up in landfill or as litter anywhere in the environment.
“It will be challenging but it is our duty as responsible organisations to deliver our products to people in the most sustainable way possible.
“It needs to be easy for people to dispose of all packaging responsibly, and with the confidence it will not go to landfill waste or worse, escape into the natural environment.”
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