DS Smith replaces 1.2 billion pieces of plastic


DS Smith

DS Smith has announced it has replaced over one billion pieces of plastic across its international markets, 16 months ahead of its 2025 target.

The company’s target concerned any primary or secondary plastic packaging that had been reduced or completely removed from customers’ packaging as a “direct result” of DS Smith’s solution.

The sustainable packaging supplier launched a plastic replacement and reduction programme in 2020 as part of its Now & Next Sustainability Strategy.

The one billion target extended over DS Smith’s operations in 27 countries across Europe and North America.

According to DS Smith, the UK replaced over 274 million pieces of plastic, France replaced over 260 million pieces, and Germany replaced more than 153 million pieces.

The plastic items that have been replaced from supermarket shelves include fruit and vegetable punnets, plastic carriers, and shrink wrap that is commonly found on soft drink bottles.

DS SmithDS Smith said its Circular Design Principles and Circular Design Metrics were critical to meeting the one billion target.

The Metrics were created in partnership with the Ellen MacArthur Foundation and DS Smith said all its designers have been trained in Circular Design Principles.

DS Smith also said its designers can assess performance against areas such as recycled content and recyclability, indicative estimated CO2 emissions, levels of excess waste and supply chain parameters in partnership with customers.

DS Smith said it has implemented the Circular Design Metrics across a range of sectors, including retail goods, food and beverages, automotive parts, and industrial devices.

Miles Roberts, Group Chief Executive, DS Smith commented: “By innovating to help our customers replace or reduce plastics, we are responding to societal demands to reduce plastic pollution, as well as growing our partnerships with customers.

“There are many more positive impacts we can make by supporting our customers and communities in their sustainability goals and we are extremely motivated by this mission.

“But it is important to note that if our customers – the biggest FMCG brands – are to remove plastics at scale and at pace, they need the right regulatory framework around them. What we need are stronger, harmonised, global, regulations that level the playing field, to help businesses move away from plastic.”

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