Sector News

Europe’s bottled water industry signs up to major plastic goals

May 15, 2018
Chemical Value Chain

Europe’s bottled water industry has announced two major commitments that will strengthen its effort on reducing plastic waste.

Members of the European Federation of Bottled Waters (EFBW) will commit to collecting 90% of all PET bottles by 2025 as an EU average, ensuring discarded plastic containers can be converted into rPET.

They will also collaborate with the recycling industry to use at least 25% rPET in new bottles by 2025, highlighting the industry’s commitment to closing the circular economy.

The EFBW, which represents Europe’s bottled water producers, pointed out that all packaging used by the industry is recyclable – including glass, PET and aluminium. But, while declining to pass the blame for post-consumer waste to consumers, the organisation acknowledged that current PET collection rates vary drastically throughout the EU.

EFBW president Jean-Pierre Deffis said: “Building on our longstanding sustainable approach to resource management, we are committed to achieving these industry-wide actions. PET drink bottles already achieve the highest recycling rate of any plastic packaging material in the EU. But even one bottle ending up as litter is one too many.

“It will take a concerted, coordinated effort from many different value-chain actors to drive positive change. EFBW’s members are stepping up to lead the way.”

To ensure that its members can deliver on the new pledges, the EFBW intends to work with all relevant stakeholders, including Plastics Recyclers Europe (PRE).

PRE’s president, Ton Emans, welcomed EFBW’s initiative: “Over the last years the bottled water industry has been a front runner in PET circularity. Recyclers are eager to embark on this new journey. Today PET recyclers do not have enough feedstock to supply the market. The priority is to drastically improve collection and quality sorting.”

As well as the two headline commitments, the EFBW plans to invest further in the development of renewable packaging materials, claiming “the bottled water industry has always had sustainability at its heart”.

EFBW members will also engage with consumers, who play a key role in preventing littering, while supporting initiatives to encourage the proper disposal of PET packaging.

Plastics face mounting pressure; scrutiny over the extent of plastic waste and single-use plastic packages was worsened by revelations that bottled water brands, highly regarded for their safety and purity, were found to contain high levels of microplastics – in some cases a result of polypropylene caps.

Companies like Nestlé, Unilever and Coca-Cola had already announced extensive action on plastic.

In order to guarantee transparency and accountability, EFBW will report regularly on progress of the pledges announced today.

Source: FoodBev

comments closed

Related News

June 24, 2022

BASF to build commercial scale battery recycling black mass plant in Schwarzheide, Germany

Chemical Value Chain

BASF will build a commercial scale battery recycling black mass plant in Schwarzheide, Germany. This investment strengthens BASF’s cathode active materials (CAM) production and recycling hub in Schwarzheide. The site is an ideal location for the build-up of battery recycling activities given the presence of many EV car manufacturers and cell producers in Central Europe.

June 24, 2022

Clariant restructures business units, reorganizes leadership

Chemical Value Chain

Clariant says it is reducing its number of businesses from five to three, by merging units, under a reorganization that is in line with the company’s purpose-led strategy and cultural transformation. The moves will position Clariant for long-term sustainable growth, the company says.

June 24, 2022

Chemicals & Plastics Procurement: what to expect in the second half of 2022

Chemical Value Chain

Chemicals & plastics industry has the most diversified end-use market across all manufacturing industries. The industry returned to growth in 2021 but a supply chain crunch prevented it from becoming stronger. The market is likely to stabilize in the second half of 2022 with a supply-demand balance.