Over the past fifty years, the use of plastics has increased dramatically. It has delivered enormous benefits, but the costs are clear.
This is why Nestlé along with other companies are signing up to the European Plastics Pact.
The Pact will help these companies to achieve 100% recyclable or reusable packaging and reduce the use of virgin plastics by one third by 2025.
The European Plastics Pact, initiated by France and the Netherlands, has a single goal: to accelerate the transition towards a circular plastics economy. It will stop the sole dependence on virgin plastics – plastics made from non-renewable fossil fuel. The Pact brings together leading companies, as well as NGOs and governments, who are together committing to realize common goals by 2025 and go beyond the current legislation.
These European targets include:
- Reducing virgin plastic products and packaging by at least 20%.
- Raising collection and recycling capacity in Europe for plastic packaging by at least 25%.
- Boosting the use of recycled plastics in packaging to an average of at least 30%.
Marco Settembri, Nestlé CEO for Europe, Middle East and North Africa said, "We are pleased to sign the European Pact. One of our joint objectives is to create a circular economy by improving collection, sorting and recycling schemes across Europe. Already today a new Vittel plastic bottle is manufactured out of used ones. Tomorrow, we want to make sure that also other packaging, such as our wrappers and pouches, can be recycled into new food packaging”.
The challenge for Nestlé, and the food industry at large, is that it is currently cheaper to produce packaging from virgin plastics than to use recycled food-grade plastics. To overcome this, Nestlé recently announced a more than CHF 1.5 billion investment in recycled food- grade plastics.
This aims at giving a clear signal to recycling companies to focus on recycled food-grade material and help create a new market.
Other organisations from across the packaging value chain that have also become signatories of the European Plastics Pact include: Unilever, FrieslandCampina, Evertis, Flexfilm, Henkel, Neste, Schneider Electric, Suez, Tomra, and Veolia.