McDonald’s sources certified wood fibre for front end packaging

Fast-food giant McDonalds has announced that all of its European-sourced packaging is now sourced from chain-of-custody certified wood fibre, as the company continues on its journey to source 100% sustainable packaging in Europe.

McDonalds has confirmed that it now sources its wood fibre from recycled sources certified to at least one of the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) standard or a Programme for Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC) national standard. 

McDonald’s vice president for sustainability in the worldwide supply chain Keith Kenny said: “This step represents a key milestone in McDonald’s European sustainable packaging strategy to source 100% wood fibre from recycled or certified virgin sources by 2016, as well as providing credible evidence to our customers that the packaging products we use come from well-managed forests.

“The achievement has involved collaboration across the length and breadth of our supply chain in all 38 European markets, from those that supply our restaurants right back to the family-run businesses that own the forests.”

Fibre front

Wood fibre refers to materials extracted from wood to produce paper and board products. This is found in McDonald’s ‘front of counter’ sales packaging. Wood fibre was recently identified by WWF along with beef, coffee, fish and palm oil as a priority raw material. The new milestone from McDonalds aims to ensure that the 170,000 tonnes it uses in packaging each year is certifiably sustainable.

Lasting commitment

Back in April, the company announced its plan to ending deforestation across its global commodities supply chain. The company announced a set of commitments, which will be implemented by the end of 2015; fibre based packaging was one of the key issues to tackle.

The wood fibre scheme also forms part of McDonald’s global waste drive. The use of recycled materials develops on last year’s progress on waste minimisation which included a specific reverse logistics initiative in the UK to send zero waste to landfill.

Last week McDonald’s was part of an 81 strong team of corporations that signed up to a new White House-sponsored pledge promising individual and collective action on climate change.

Matt Mace

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