Coca-Cola, Kellogg’s and Nestle vow to cut all plastic waste in bid to tackle ocean pollution

29th October 2018 | Recycling

Coca-Cola, Kellogg’s and Nestle are among 250 major brands pledging to cut all plastic waste from their operations – a move described by the UN as the most ambitious effort yet to fight plastic pollution. The commitment comes as public pressure mounts on manufacturer and retailers to reduce the avalanche of plastic packaging clogging landfills and chocking the oceans. The signatories have promised to eliminate all single-use plastics, and to invest in new technology so all packaging can be recycled by 2025.

The initiative is the result of a partnership between The Ellen MacArthur Foundation and the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). Erik Solheim, executive director of UNEP, described the commitment as “The most ambitious set of targets we have seen yet in the fight to beat plastics pollution.”

Plastic waste

UNEP has estimated that if current pollution rates continue, there will be more plastic in the sea than fish by 2050. Around 8 million tonnes of bottles and plastic waste fill the oceans each year, killing marine life and entering the food chain. Most efforts to fight plastic pollution have focused on cleaning up the waste. But the latest commitment is designed to cut down on unnecessary plastic at its source.

“We know that cleaning up plastics from our beaches and oceans is vital, but this does not stop the tied of plastic entering the oceans each year,” said Ellen MacArthur, the record-breaking sailor behind the new initiative. “We need to move upstream to the source of the flow.”

Danone, H&M, L’Oreal, Mars and Unilever are among the other major brands to have agreed to get rid of plastic waste. Thee of the brands that have signed-up the commitment – Coca-Cola, PepsiCo and Nestle – were recently named the world’s worst plastic polluters, according to an index by the Break Free From Plastic movement.

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