PEPSICO has committed to eliminating all virgin plastic from its Pepsi brand beverage bottles sold in Britain and eight other countries by 2022.
The firm said it will package the entire range of beverages with plastics recycled from post-consumer packaging (rPET).
PepsiCo estimates that the move to 100% rPet will eliminate over 70,000 tonnes of virgin, fossil-fuel based plastic per year, and will lower carbon emissions per bottle by approximately 40%.
The company added that technological innovations in the use of recycled plastics in carbonated drink bottles, improvements in the appearance of recycled plastic, and greater availability of recycled materials on the market have made the move possible.
Under the plans, Germany, Poland, Romania, Greece and Spain will switch to 100% rPET in 2021, while France, Britain, Belgium and Luxembourg will be at 100% rPET in 2022.
In France, Great Britain, Germany, Belgium and Luxembourg the commitment goes beyond Pepsi brands, to include all soft drinks – for instance 7Up, Mountain Dew and Lipton Ice Tea.
Silviu Popovici, CEO of PepsiCo Europe said, “We are committed to immediate action to address the plastic waste challenge. Starting with these nine markets, we are working to incorporate 100% recycled plastic into our beverage bottles so we can minimise our use of virgin, fossil-fuel based packaging. We will also look to go further and faster in other European markets where the conditions allow.
“Collaboration between all stakeholders across the EU is central to this issue. We need to design packaging to be recyclable, reduce the amount of packaging we use, and make it easy for consumers to recycle. Working with policy makers and waste management systems, we need to collect more bottles so that plastic needs never become waste. Everyone can and should play a part in developing a circular economy for plastic.”