Britvic switches more brands to 100% recycled plastic bottles

Britvic has announced that its Robinsons, Lipton Ice Tea and drench brands are moving to 100% recycled plastic (rPET) for all 500ml bottles, as part of a wider commitment to move to fully recycled content in the UK by 2022.

Britvic switches more brands to 100% recycled plastic bottles

Britvic pledged to only sell plastic bottles made using 100% recycled content in the UK by the end of 2022

The 500ml bottles for the well-known brands will be made from 100% rPET in a move that will save Britvic 1,354 tonnes of virgin plastic annually.

Robinsons, Lipton Ice Tea and drench 500ml bottles will come from an rPET manufacturing facility in North Yorkshire operated by Esterform Packaging. Back in 2019, Britvic invested £5m into the facility, which is powered by 100% renewable energy and provides the company with a UK supply of food-grade rPET.

Britvic’s director of sustainable business Sarah Webster said: “We are extremely proud and excited to see the first use of Esterpet in our iconic brands as they make the move to 100% rPET.

“It’s a fantastic example of the progress made in the facility with Britvic’s investment support and the first in a series of changes using Esterpet packaging as we continue our journey to fulfil our rPET commitment.”

Alongside the 1,354 tonnes of virgin plastic saved from this move, Britvic has already saved 1,900 tonnes by switching Ballygowan Mineral Water and Fruit Shoot Hydro switching to rPET bottles.

Last year, Britvic pledged to only sell plastic bottles made using 100% recycled content in the UK by the end of 2022.

Britvic had previously committed to achieving an average of 50% recycled content in PET bottles sold in Great Britain by the end of 2025, but raised its ambitions after switching to 100% recycled PET for Fruit Shoot Hydro and Ballygowan 500ml. The new goal applies to its own brands and the PepsiCo-owned brands it sells in the UK and Ireland, including 7UP and Lipton Iced Tea.

As well as signing a long-term agreement to source material from the UK’s largest recycler of post-consumer PET, Esterform Packaging, Britvic has also backed BP Infinia, an innovative technology that enables low-value or hard-to-recycle PET to be recycled chemically. The process depolymerises PET, breaking it down into monomers that can be purified ready for reuse.

Britvic’s wider plastics strategy is rooted in the requirements of WRAP’s UK Plastics Pact, of which it is a founding signatory. The company’s latest sustainability report states that all primary packaging is easy to recycle and that it has removed more than 1,500 tonnes of primary plastic packaging from supply chains and products over the past three years.

Matt Mace

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