Category Archives: Recycling and Biodegradable News

McDonald’s to cut plastic packaging

McDonald’s UK is to remove single-use plastics from its salads range and plastic lids from all McFlurry ice creams, in a drive to reduce plastic packaging.

McDonald's

All main meal and side salads will be served in 100% renewable and recyclable cardboard containers instead of single-use plastic.

Changing out the existing plastic bowl, shaker salad cups and lids will result in 102 metric tons of plastic being removed annually.

McDonald's

The fast-food giant is also ditching plastic lids from all McFlurry ice creams from September which it said will reduce plastic waste by 383 metric tonnes annually.

The new salad and meal containers are made from carton board which contains 50% recycled content and 50% new, which itself comes from certified sustainable sources.

The coating on the containers, designed to keep them rigid, is also 100% renewable.

In total, the new packaging across the McFlurry and salads range will reduce plastic waste by 485 metric tonnes annually, said McDonald’s.

Beth Hart, Supply Chain Director, McDonald’s UK & Ireland said: “Removing plastic lids from the McFlurry, and introducing new cardboard packaging for salads, will save nearly 500 metric tonnes of plastic a year. It’s the latest step in our sustainability journey.

“We are committed to listening to our customers and finding solutions with our suppliers that work for them, this is the latest example of that – but by no means the end. We continue to look for solutions for our cutlery and lids, for example, but this is great progress. For us, sustainability is about more than just packaging. We have to look at the whole journey – by 2030 we’re committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 36%.”

Highland Spring to roll out recycled plastic eco bottles

Highland Spring set to launch its eco bottle, made from 100% recycled plastic.

Following a successful 2018 trial, the Highland Spring eco bottle will launch this month will join the existing Highland Spring natural source water range, where all bottles are 100% recyclable.

The bottle is made from 100% recycled plastic, although the label and cap are not made from recycled plastic; bottle, label and cap are 100% recyclable.

The mineral water giant said its consumers had expressed a ‘significant’ desire for more eco bottles at trial stage, and this launch will be followed by more 100% recycled and recyclable plastic eco bottles later in the year.

Highland Spring Group Chief Executive, Les Montgomery, said: “We are grateful to shoppers who gave us their thoughts and feedback, throughout the trial. They asked us to make the eco bottle a permanent addition to the Highland Spring family and we are proud to say that is exactly what we have done.

“Increasing our use of recycled plastic is an absolute priority for Highland Spring and this is a hugely exciting step in our mission to provide healthy hydration choices in environmentally sustainable ways. We hope that having innovative products such as the eco bottle in supermarkets alongside 100% recyclable bottles will help shoppers understand more about plastic as a valuable resource that should not be treated as waste.”

DRS to end Recycling Scepticism

The imminent introduction of a deposit return system is set to spark a recycling revolution…

Throughout September, the CPRE held 35 litter picks across England as part of its nationwide ‘Green Clean’. As well as helping communities clean up their local green spaces, CPRE wanted to highlight the astonishing variety of cans and bottles discarded across our countryside, towns and cities.

CPRE said the data resulting from the Green Clean events will help the government as it designs England’s ‘deposit return system’, “which – if properly set up to collect every drink can and bottle – will provide a simple solution to recycling confusion and boost recycling rates for drinks container waste to more than 90%.”

The campaign said it will share this data with the government, via its upcoming deposit return consultation, and said in order to be as effective as possible, the system must accept cans and bottles of all materials, shapes and sizes. That includes drinks packaging that is on the market now, as well as being future-proofed against changes to the type and size of containers in the future.

Volunteers taking part in the Green Clean collected a total of 11,212 cans and bottles of all shapes, sizes and materials. Over a third (35%) of those collected were made from plastic, 50% were aluminium, 14% glass and 1% Tetra Pak.

While plastic packaging has been making the headlines, this data shows that two-thirds of all drinks containers littered are made from other materials – such as aluminium and glass – and should be taken just as seriously.

Of the plastics: 10% were small bottles (below 500ml), 71% were medium sized (500ml – average water bottle), 10% were large (501ml-1.5l), and 9% were considered extra-large (more than 1.5l).

Of the cans: 18% were small (below 330ml – small energy drink), 29% were medium sized (330ml – average fizzy drink can), and 53% were large (more than 330ml – average beer can).

Of the glass bottles: 25% were small (under 330ml – stubby and regular beer bottle), 42% were medium sized (400-750ml – larger beer bottle), and 33% were large (more than 750 ml – wine bottles and large spirits bottles).

CPRE’s evidence demonstrates that there is no limit to the types and sizes of cans and bottles that are causing harm to our wildlife and the natural world. It should provide the incentive for the Government to make the right decision and ensure that all cans and bottles, of all types and sizes, are included in England’s deposit return system.

Samantha Harding, litter programme director at the Campaign to Protect Rural England, said: “By introducing a simple deposit system the Government has a golden opportunity to end growing scepticism around current recycling methods, collect and recycle more materials than ever right here in the UK, and ensure that those who produce the packaging rightly pay the full cost of recovering the materials that they produce. But it will only work if it is universal in the types of cans and bottles it accepts.

“Deposit return infrastructure is the same for large plastic bottles as it would be for small plastic bottles, cans and glass – failing to set the system up to collect all that it can, will set the system up to fail. The Government is committed to tackling waste and boosting recycling and with this solution, it has the chance to get things right. In recent times, there has been a noticeable shift in consumer behaviour and attitudes – people genuinely want to take responsibility for the amount of packaging used. We all want recycling to work, but our data clearly shows that current collection methods are failing.”

In March this year, the government promised to ‘introduce a deposit-return scheme in England for single use drinks containers, subject to consultation later this year’.

However, there is yet to be an agreement within the drinks and packaging industries on the system, and the type and size of containers that will be included.

PepsiCo aims for 50% rPET by 2030

PepsiCo has announced its goal to achieve 50% recycled plastic (rPET) by 2030 across the European Union.

PepsiCo aims for 50% rPET by 2030

The soft drinks firm has an interim target of 45% by 2025.  Through this target, the company will more than triple the amount of recycled plastic it uses, equating to over 50,000 tonnes of rPET.

The announcement comes in support of the European Commission’s voluntary recycled plastics pledging campaign to ensure that by 2025, ten million tonnes of recycled plastics are used to make new products in the EU market.  PepsiCo’s goal covers all countries expected to be members of the EU in 2025, and all the company’s beverage brands in PET (the primary plastic used in its bottles) including Pepsi, Pepsi MAX, 7Up, Tropicana and Naked.  The goal will apply across PepsiCo’s Beverage operations, including company-owned and franchise.

Today’s announcement builds on PepsiCo’s broader, global Performance with Purpose vision, which includes a goal to design 100% of its packaging to be recyclable, compostable or biodegradable and to reduce its packaging’s carbon impact by 2025.  The company estimates that currently, 90% of its beverage packaging worldwide is fully recyclable.

PepsiCo is already a significant user of food-grade recycled plastic (rPET) in the EU, using approximately 13% rPET in its EU beverage operations in 2017.

Silviu Popovici, president, PepsiCo Europe Sub-Saharan Africa commented:  “At PepsiCo, we take our responsibility to protect the environment seriously and are steadfast in our commitment to finding sustainable ways to create our products.  We have been on a mission in the European Union to advance a culture that encourages and supports recovery and recycling of packaging.  Today, I am very happy to announce that we will now go much further in the use of recycled plastics in our packaging, as we work to meet and exceed this new target in the years ahead.

“Developing an effective, long-term approach to sustainable packaging requires a multifaceted effort, and PepsiCo is committed to collaborating with the many stakeholders involved to ensure it succeeds in developing a Circular Economy for plastics into the future.  With serious under-capacity in the supply of affordable recycled plastics suitable for food packaging, we call on public and private stakeholders in the recycling system, including the European Commission, to join us and make the needed investments to expand recycling capacity.  Provided the right progress is made in increasing packaging recovery rates, and improving reprocessing technology, we will look to go even further than our current commitment.”

The company also works with multiple stakeholders to support packaging sustainability, including being a member of the New Plastics Economy, a three-year initiative led by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation to build momentum towards a plastics system that works.

A critical part of increasing the availability of recycled plastics, suitable for re-use in packaging, is ensuring that bottles are placed in the recycling system, rather than littering the environment.  In addition to participating in Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) schemes across the EU, PepsiCo is partnering on programmes to increase recovery and recycling rates.  These include initiatives to promote and educate consumers on recycling, including on-pack labelling campaigns, such as “jede Dose zaehlt”/ Every Can Counts in Austria and “Vous triez, nous recyclons”, a consumer campaign in France, promoting the importance of sorting waste to ensure recyclability of plastic bottles.

France to tax non recycled plastic packaging

France is planning to introduce a penalty system in 2019 that would increase the cost of consumer goods with packaging made of non-recycled plastic.

France to tax non recycled plastic packaging

 

It’s part of a pledge to use only recycled plastic throughout the country by 2025, according to an environment ministry official.

Brune Poirson, secretary of state for ecological transition, said it was one of several measures planned in the lead up to the 2025 target, including a deposit-refund scheme for plastic bottles.  There are also plans to cut taxes for recycling operations.

“Declaring war on plastic is not enough. We need to transform the French economy,” she told the Journal du Dimanche newspaper.

Under the new plan, products with recycled plastic packaging could cost up to 10% less, while those containing non-recycled plastic up to 10% more, Poirson said.

Which is not possible to recycle?