Coca-Cola, Pepsi and Dr Pepper are part of a new initiative to increase the collection and recycling of their plastic bottles.
The Coca-Cola Company, Keurig Dr Pepper and PepsiCo have today (30 Oct) announced the launch of the Every Bottle Back initiative, a drive to reduce the industry’s use of virgin plastic by making “significant investments” to improve the collection and recycling of plastic bottles.
The initiative aims to support the circular plastics economy by reinforcing to consumers the value of their 100% recyclable plastic bottles and caps and ensuring they don’t end up as waste in oceans, rivers or landfill.
The initiative is being run in conjunction with the World Wildlife Fund (WWF), which will provide “strategic scientific advice” to help measure the industry’s progress in reducing its plastic footprint, and also with The Recycling Partnership and Closed Loop Partners, which will assist in deploying funds for the initiative.
Our bottles are designed to be remade, and that is why this program is so important
“Our industry recognises the serious need to reduce new plastic in our environment, and we want to do our part to lead with innovative solutions,” said Katherine Lugar, president and CEO of the American Beverage Association.
“Our bottles are designed to be remade, and that is why this program is so important. We are excited to partner with the leading environmental and recycling organisations to build a circular system for the production, use, recovery and remaking of our bottles.
“Every Bottle Back will ensure that our plastic bottles are recovered after use and remade into new bottles, so we can reduce the amount of new plastic used to bring our beverages to market. This is an important step for our industry, and it builds on our ongoing commitment to protecting the environment for generations to come.”
The Every Bottle Back initiative will measure industry progress in reducing the use of new plastic in the United States through a collaboration with ReSource: Plastic, WWF’s corporate activation hub.
It will also aim to improve the quality and availability of recycled plastic in key regions of the country by directing the equivalent of $400 million to The Recycling Partnership and Closed Loop Partners through a new $100 million industry fund that will be matched three-to-one by other grants and investors.
The investments will be used to improve sorting, processing and collection in areas with the biggest infrastructure gaps to help increase the amount of recycled plastic available to be remade into beverage bottles.
Reaching our goal of No Plastic in Nature by 2030 will only happen if business, governments and the NGO community work together to fix a broken plastic material system
A public awareness campaign will also be launched to help consumers understand the value of 100% recyclable bottles through community outreach and partner engagement and reinforce the importance of getting these bottles back, so they can be remade into new bottles.
According to a poll conducted by Public Opinion Strategies (POS) on behalf of ABA, nearly half of consumers were unaware that America’s leading beverage companies are already making bottles that are 100% recyclable, including the caps.
“Reaching our goal of No Plastic in Nature by 2030 will only happen if business, governments and the NGO community work together to fix a broken plastic material system,” said Sheila Bonini, senior vice president of private sector engagement at WWF.
“ABA is driving this sense of collaboration within the beverage industry to address one critical piece within this system, which is PET recycling in the U.S. Measured by our ReSource: Plastic footprint tracker, the efforts made through Every Bottle Back will be met with data-driven solutions to ensure that real progress is being made.
“We hope the ambition raised by this initiative will inspire other industries to follow suit within the broader effort to stop plastic waste pollution.”