Circular roundtable: How can businesses accelerate the resource revolution?
Sustainability and corporate responsibility managers from a range of businesses recently gathered in London for an exclusive roundtable hosted by edie and EDF Energy, to discuss how organisations are stepping up efforts to accelerate a circular economy.
Bio-based Crocs and Illinois' zero-carbon bill: The sustainability success stories of the week
As part of our Mission Possible campaign, edie brings you this weekly round-up of five of the best sustainability success stories of the week from across the globe.
What makes a sustainability leader? Meet the Business of the Year the Midcounties Co-operative
With the entry deadline for edie's 2022 Sustainability Leaders Awards less than a month away, this series showcases the achievements of previous winners and reveals their secrets to success. Up next: Winner of our Business of the Year award, the Midcounties Co-operative.
Morrisons to launch six 'zero waste' stores in Scotland
Retailer Morrisons has confirmed plans to trial six "zero waste" stores in Edinburgh, which could be replicated across all its stores nationwide if successful.
Loop: Tesco launches returnable packaging system for select product ranges
Tesco has today (13 September) unveiled a new partnership with the Loop platform to enable teabags, beverages, cleaning products and other items to be purchased in reusable and returnable packaging.
Plastic pollution: WWF urges action to prevent societal costs hitting $7trn by 2040
The societal cost of plastic produced in 2040 could hit $7.1trn unless urgent action is taken, according to a new report from WWF.
Government launches consultation on single-use plastics ban
The UK Government has on Friday (27 August) announced that it will run a consultation to outline what single-use plastic items could be banned in England over the coming years.
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.
Dixons Carphone launches nationwide polystyrene takeback scheme
Electrical and telecommunications retailer Dixons Carphone has unveiled fresh new commitments to embrace the circular economy, including making all its own-label products packaging reusable or recyclable by 2023 and introducing a nationwide rollout of an in-store takeback scheme for polystyrene.
Maltesers ditches black plastic liners from boxes
Mars Wrigley-owned brand Maltesers has removed the black polyethylene (PE) liner from its boxes, meaning the packaging is now recyclable.
UK allocates first round of support from £500m Blue Planet Fund
Global projects focused on protecting oceans and combatting the climate crisis have been awarded a share of the UK's £500m Blue Planet Fund.
Report: Just 12 businesses account for more than half of UK's packaging litter
An analysis of the litter collected during more than 600 clean-up events across the UK this year has found that packaging from businesses including Coca-Cola, PepsiCo and McDonald's is the most commonly littered.
Co-op launches village-wide behaviour change study for recycling soft plastics
Co-op has launched a village-wide behaviour change study in a bid to get more than 1,000 residents of a village in Somerset to understand how soft plastics can be collected and recycled.
Co-op to host reverse vending machines at music festivals, turning recycled plastic bottles into uniforms
Supermarket Co-op has confirmed plans to host reverse vending machines for plastic bottles and drinks cans at five music festivals this summer, and has forged a partnership to recycle the collected materials into uniforms for staff.
McDonald's to trial deposit return scheme for coffee cups in Northampton
McDonald's has chosen six restaurants in Northampton to trial a £1 deposit on reusable coffee cups in a bid to cut back on waste.
Turkey reverses ban on plastics imports for recycling
Just eight days after a ban on the import of certain kinds of plastic waste was instated by the Turkish Government in a bid to reduce plastic pollution, the mandate has been lifted for PET.
UK's waste management sector targets net-zero emissions through £10bn infrastructure overhaul
The trade body representing the UK's resource and waste management industry has unveiled a sector-wide commitment to reach net-zero emissions by 2040, through a £10bn investment into new recycling infrastructure and a focus on zero-emission vehicles.
Coca-Cola to use 100% recycled plastics for all on-the-go bottles in the UK
All small bottles produced by Coca-Cola in the UK will be made using 100% recycled plastic, in a move that will save 29,000 tonnes of virgin plastic each year.
Sainsbury's rolls out flexible plastic recycling scheme nationwide
Sainsbury's is set to introduce in-store recycling systems for flexible plastics packaging across all stores nationwide, following successful trials in the North East of England earlier this year.
Unilever unveils new UK refillable packaging trials
Unilever is expanding trials of refillable packaging across the UK, including its first 'return on the go' scheme, in a bid to cut back on unnecessary plastics packaging.
Unilever introduces paper-based bottles for laundry detergent
Unilever is set to launch its first paper-based bottles for laundry detergent in Brazil next year, with an ambition in place to introduce the packaging across Europe thereafter.
Plans unveiled for UK's second plastic-to-hydrogen recycling plant
After plans to build a plastic-to-hydrogen recycling facility near Ellesmere Port, Cheshire, were approved last year, the developers have unveiled plans for a second UK site in Scotland.
Manufacturing giants unite on £1m Flexible Plastic Fund
Mars UK, Mondelēz International, Nestlé, PepsiCo and Unilever are all supporting a new £1m initiative to improve the recyclability of "flexible" plastic bags, wrappers, films, pouches, packets and sachets.
Absolut replaces plastics from bottle necks as part of paper-based bottle development
The Absolut Company has unveiled the latest milestone in its mission to create a fully paper-based drinks bottle, having replaced the plastic used to shape bottle necks, with a bio-based barrier.
Turkey to ban plastic imports after 'recycling' from UK and other nations dumped and burned
The Turkish Government has outlined plans to ban the import of certain kinds of plastic waste, after a Greenpeace investigation found that plastics sent to Turkey for recycling were actually polluting the environment.
Beyond retail: Banks and fossil fuel giants urged to face role in plastic pollution crisis
Just 20 businesses are responsible for half of the world's single-use plastic waste, with fossil fuel majors including ExxonMobil and Total among the worst offenders, a new study has revealed.
Unilever introduces fully recyclable toothpaste tubes
Unilever is introducing recyclable toothpaste tubes to its oral care brands in two of its largest markets, as part of wider plans to convert its branded toothpaste portfolio to widely recyclable packaging by 2025.
Time, innovation and partnerships: How Unilever is moving away from single-use plastics
EXCLUSIVE: Unilever's chief R&D officer Richard Slater tells edie how a focus on better, less and no plastic is enabling the consumer goods giant to reduce its plastics footprint globally while improving the recyclability of packaging.
PlayBack: Mattel launches toy recycling scheme
Mattel, the toy giant behind Barbie, has launched a new take-back and recycling scheme for used toys.
10p plastic bag charge comes into force for all businesses
The UK Government has confirmed that it is increasing the levy applied to single-use plastic carrier bags to 10p.
Cutting through cynicism: Why are community-level environmental campaigns so effective?
The debate around individual choices versus action from nations and big businesses has been ongoing in the environmental space for decades. But, increasingly, campaigns that are somewhere in the middle, at community level, are leading the way when it comes to getting results.
Co-op to remove plastic bags for life from all stores
Co-op will remove plastic bags for life from sale in all 2,600 stores, citing concerns that they are increasing the amount of plastic in circulation, instead choosing to offer customers 10p compostable bags.
Aldi launches packaging-free refillable trial
Aldi has today (14 April) launched its first trial of packaging-free products, with a variety of rice and pasta on offer as part of a new refillable service.
Morrisons to remove all plastic bags for life from UK stores
Supermarket retailer Morrisons is removing all plastic versions of its "bags for life" from stores nationwide, in favour of paper and other reusable options, in a move that will save 3,200 tonnes of plastic each year.
Government to explore ban on oxo-degradable plastics
The UK Government is considering introducing a ban on types of plastics that can breakdown naturally, following an evidence-gathering consultation into the environmental impacts of plastics and alternative materials.
Bio-recycling and water bottle refills: Waitrose invests £1m to tackle plastic waste
Two years ago, Waitrose & Partners pledged £1m from the sale of carrier bags to innovators working to solve the plastic pollution crisis. Now, it has revealed the successes of the projects it has supported.
Available to watch on-demand: edie's Circular Economy Inspiration sessions
Experts from the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, Ikea, Innovate UK and The Body Shop took part in The Circular Economy Inspiration Sessions - an afternoon of live, interactive presentations and discussions on Thursday 25 March.
Government launches consultations on Deposit Return Scheme and Extended Producer Responsibility
MPs have today introduced new consultations to create the largest ever overhaul to the waste and resources sector, recommending that manufacturers cover the full costs of recycling packaging waste, standardising domestic and commercial waste collection and introducing a Deposit Return Scheme for certain types of packaging in 2024.
SustyTalk: Planet Patrol's Lizzie Carr on single-use plastics and business activism
edie's #SustyTalk series continues during Circular Economy Week, with Planet Patrol's founder and activist Lizzie Carr discussing public attitudes towards single-use plastics and how businesses can become activists to help create a closed-loop future.
Why the circular economy is primed to improve social sustainability and value chain resiliency
EXCLUSIVE: The coronavirus pandemic has highlighted the fragility of both society and the sprawling value chains that the economy relies on. Shifting nations to a circular economy could be key in delivering a green recovery that champions sustainable income and environmental stewardship.
edie launches updated best-practice guide for businesses tackling single-use plastics
edie has today (24 March) launched an updated report that outlines the steps businesses can and should take to identify, reduce, replace and eliminate single-use plastics from their operations, supply chains and products and services as part of efforts to build back better from the coronavirus pandemic.
Recycling gap: Most Brits claim they recycle plastic at home, so why aren't rates improving?
A new survey of 5,000 adults has revealed that eight in ten UK adults recycle at least three-quarters of the plastics waste produced in their homes. So why is the UK's domestic plastics recycling rate stagnating?
Circular Economy Week: edie kicks off week of zero-waste themed content and events
Running from 22-26 March, edie's Circular Economy Week includes exclusive interviews, podcasts, reports, webinars and in-depth feature articles - all dedicated to embracing closed-loop models.
Ocado and KP Snacks detail progress on plastic phase-outs
Online retailer Ocado had launched a refresh of its own-range products that will remove more than nine million pieces of packaging while also reducing the amount of plastic used, while KP Snacks has also announced packaging reductions.
Mondelez and PepsiCo set new plastic pledges following non-profit discussions
Two of the world's largest users of plastics, Mondelez International and PepsiCo have agreed to set new reduction targets following intensive discussions with the As You Sow non-profit.
British American Tobacco targets carbon-neutral value chain by 2050
British American Tobacco (BAT) has updated an ambition of becoming carbon neutral across its business by 2030 to now account for its entire value chain by 2050.
Molson Coors unveils bottles with 90% lower carbon footprint
The Molson Coors Beverage Company is rolling out new glass beer bottles that have reduced the carbon emissions associated with production by up to 90%.
Next wave of speakers confirmed for edie's circular economy online event
Experts from the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, Ikea, Innovate UK and The Body Shop have been confirmed among the first wave of speakers for The Circular Economy Inspiration Sessions – an afternoon of live, interactive presentations and discussions taking place virtually on Thursday 25 March.
Sainsbury's rolls out flexible plastic take-back and recycling scheme
Sainsbury's has begun collecting hard-to-recycle flexible plastic film at 63 of its stores and will use the material to trial an innovative new recycling process.
Coca-Cola to trial 2,000 paper-based drinks bottles in Europe
The Coca-Cola Company - one of the biggest plastic producers in the food and beverage space - has confirmed plans to trial 2,000 paper-based bottles this year, to test the material's viability as an alternative to single-use plastics.
Absolut hits recycled materials target four years early
The Absolut Company has met a target to use 50% recycled material in its glass bottles four years ahead of schedule.
Nestlé reduces plastic from cereal packaging and rolls out paper Smarties packs worldwide
Well-known cereal brands including Cheerios, Shreddies and Shredded Wheat are set to reduce the amount of plastic used in packaging by more than 600 tonnes annually, while Nestlé's Smarties brand is also switching to recyclable paper packaging worldwide.
Paper or plastic? How to make the most sustainable packaging choices
The EU tax on plastic packaging waste, implemented on 1 January 2021, has again brought to the fore the debate about what is the most sustainable packaging material.
UK Government faces fresh accusations of backtracking on post-Brexit environment pledges
MPs and Lords, including former Shadow Environment Secretary Lord Clark, are urging the Government to prove that it won't export low-quality plastics to developing nations for recycling, arguing that policy loopholes currently exist.
Heinz removes plastics from canned product packaging
Heinz is replacing plastic shrink-wrap packaging across its multipack canned products for sustainably certified paperboard, a move which will reduce the company's plastics footprint by 550 tonnes.
Tennent's invests £7m to remove plastic packaging from beer cans
Scottish brewer Tennent's is investing £7m into new packaging technology at its Glasgow-based brewery which will remove more than 100 million plastic rings from its lager can packs by 2022.
Report: UK could recycle three times as much plastic by 2030
The UK could recycle 3.5 times as much plastic in 2030 as it did in 2019, if the government works with the private and public sectors to accelerate investment in collection and processing infrastructure.
#SustyTalk: Suntory Beverage & Food's Michelle Norman on net-zero, plastics and the green recovery
edie's #SustyTalk interview series continues with Suntory Beverage & Food GB&I's Michelle Norman revisiting the company's key climate and plastics milestones from 2020 and looking ahead to what this year will hold for corporate sustainability.
BBC to outline net-zero target for 2030
The BBC's director-general Tim Davie has outlined ambitions to staff for the broadcaster to achieve net-zero emissions by 2030, with further details expected later in the year.
Beefeater removes plastic from new bottle range
Beefeater has launched a new 100% recyclable bottle, featuring paper labels and an aluminium cap that will be rolled out globally across its range of gins this month.
Banks 'have provided $1.7trn of unconditional support to plastic polluters since 2015'
Global banks have been accused of collectively providing more than $1.7trn to businesses across the plastics value chain between 2015 and 2019, largely without attaching environmental conditions to support packages.
IBM to launch new data platform to map plastics waste
IBM has partnered with the Alliance to End Plastic Waste (AEPW) on a new data platform to help track plastic waste and recovery globally.
WRAP: UK's biggest businesses have cut unnecessary plastic packaging by 40%
Businesses signed up to WRAP's UK Plastics Pact, which is supported by the likes of Unilever, Nestle and PepsiCo, collectively produced 40% fewer non-recyclable and unnecessary pieces of plastic packaging this year than in 2018.
Business leaders and politicians call for ban on non-food plastic sachets
Businesses, academics and politicians have united to call for urgent action to eliminate the use of non-food plastic sachets, warning that the world is set to consumer one trillion of them by 2030.
UK to support 'Paris Agreement on plastics'
The UK Minister for Pacific and the Environment, Zac Goldsmith, has revealed that the UK is willing to discuss a new global treaty to tackle plastics pollution, which has been supported by more than two-thirds of UN member states.
The Great Reinvention: Cracking the code for circular economy business model innovation
After participating in edie's 'Business Model Innovation' open roundtable at Net-Zero Live earlier this month, sustainable business expert and commentator Mike Townsend explores four key shifts in search of the 'holy grail' - how we can transition to circular business models that are sustainable and profitable, yet also attractive for customers and suppliers.
Ellen MacArthur Foundation: Refillable packaging still accounts for just 2% of the market
Despite a swathe of successful pilot projects for plastic-free, refillable products, just 2% of the products sold by the world's biggest consumer goods firms this year came in reusable packaging.
Plastic promises and the crisis of corporate accountability
The top 10 plastic polluters that we analysed have a joint plastic footprint of almost 10 million tonnes a year - the equivalent of 30-times the weight of the Empire State Building. Last week we sent them open letters asking them to publicly support legislation and finally take meaningful action to tackle the plastic crisis they are complicit in creating.
Gillette to halve virgin plastic use and emissions by 2030
Personal care brand Gillette has committed to halving the amount of virgin, fossil-based plastics it uses by 2030 and to halve its absolute emissions within the same timeframe.
Unilever expects to double use of recycled plastics in next 12 months
Unilever has confirmed that 10% of its plastic footprint now consists of post-consumer recycled plastic (PCR), as the company pushes ahead to meet a target of halving the use of virgin plastic.
HP extends cartridge recycling scheme to 68 countries
Printing and technology giant HP has extended its recycling scheme to 68 countries and territories after collecting more than 875,000 used printer ink cartridges.
Action on plastics: Has Covid-19 stopped the refill revolution?
Many retailers and brands backtracked on plastic-free refill pledges in a bid to stop Covid-19 from spreading earlier this year. But are we really headed back towards single-use in the long term, or will there be a different "new normal" for packaging?
Supermarket and packaging giants call for UK-wide ban on degradable plastics
Representatives from the likes of Tesco, Waitrose, Aldi and the Co-op have signed an open letter to Ministers calling for a ban on plastics which are only degradable in industrial conditions with chemical additives.
Unilever and UK Government back chemical plastic recycling innovation
A joint project hoping to scale-up chemical recycling for hard-to-recycle plastics waste, involving Unilever and synthetic fuel giant Neste, has received a £3.1m grant from UK Research and Innovation (UKRI).
Morrisons, Waitrose and John Lewis remove glitter from Christmas items
Three retailers, Morrisons, Waitrose and John Lewis, have met commitments to phase-out glitter from Christmas products due to the damage the microplastics can cause to the natural environment.
Electrolux debuts vacuum cleaner made from 100% recycled plastics
Electrolux has unveiled the first product range as part of a new "circular initiative" with Stena Recycling, a new vacuum cleaner made from 100% post-consumer recycled plastics and reused materials.
Plastic-eating 'super-enzymes' and water-based fuel: The best green innovations of September 2020
Every month, numerous eye-catching and potentially transformational innovations are being developed to help businesses and nations turn their green ambitions into actions. Here, we round up six of the best from September 2020.
Plastic straws to be banned in England from Thursday
Single-use plastic straws, stirrers and cotton buds will be banned from sale and distribution in England from Thursday (1 October), following Covid-19 related delays.
Danone, Ella's Kitchen and TerraCycle launch UK-wide recycling scheme for food pouches
Baby food brand Ella's Kitchen will partner with Danone Yoghurt and TerraCycle to launch a UK recycling programme for flexible food pouch packaging, in a bid to reduce the volume of material being sent to landfill.
Boots launches takeback scheme for hard-to-recycle products
Boots has become the latest retailer to launch an in-store take-back scheme for hard-to-recycle packaging and products, offering customers £5 worth of loyalty points for every five products deposited.
Iceland joins campaigners to call for better corporate reporting on plastics
Retailer Iceland had today (16 September) joined forces with Friends of the Earth, Greenpeace, A Plastic Planet and Surfers Against Sewage in calling for corporates to better disclose their plastics consumption.
The AA's EV service and OXO's planetary sales donation: The sustainability success stories of the week
As part of our Mission Possible campaign, edie brings you this weekly round-up of five of the best sustainability success stories of the week from across the globe.
Flurry of corporate plastic announcements hints at a new normal for the circular economy
In what has been a bumper week for news stories on single-use plastics, edie explores how corporates are forging ahead with new collection and take-back schemes for recyclable packaging that had been delayed by the coronavirus pandemic.
L'Oréal launches bottles made from 100% recycled plastic and rolls out Maybelline recycling scheme
L'Oreal has confirmed that bottles of Paris Elvive will be made from 100% recycled plastic, on the same day that its Maybelline brand launched a UK recycling programme in partnership with TerraCycle.
McDonald's joins TerraCycle's Loop programme to trial reusable cups
The world's largest restaurant company McDonald's has launched a new global partnership to utilise the Loop collection model from TerraCycle that will see reusable and returnable cups trialled to cut back on single-use plastics.
Nestle invests in food-grade recycled plastics as part of closed-loop innovation drive
Nestlé has launched a new £22m ($30m) investment to increase the amount of food-grade recycled plastics it uses in packaging, has launched a new refill system for pet food and will trial recyclable paper packaging for certain brands.
Co-op launches in-store collection scheme for single-use plastics
Co-op has started an in-store collection system for "scrunchable" plastics, including carriers bags, yoghurt pots and food wrappers, which will be processed into waste disposal bin liners to be used by the retailer.
HolyGrail 2.0: Major brands sign up to explore digital watermarks to improve packaging recycling
More than 80 major European brands, including P&G, PepsiCo and Mondi will collaborate to explore the feasibility of using "digital watermarks" to improve the sorting of recyclable packaging across the European Union (EU), as part of the HolyGrail 2.0 project spearheaded by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation.
Absolut to trial 2,000 paper-based drinks bottles
The Absolut Company will trial 2,000 paper-based bottle prototypes across Sweden and the UK later this year, to test the viability of paper as an alternative to single-use plastics in beverage applications.
Coca-Cola switches to 100% recycled plastics across Netherlands and Norway
Coca-Cola is set to roll out bottles made from 100% recycled plastic (rPET) in the Netherlands and Norway, as part of the company's latest efforts in Western Europe to eliminate the use of virgin oil-based plastics in its products.
Ellen MacArthur Foundation launches Plastics Pact in US, supported by 60 major signatories
Mars, Unilever and Kimberly-Clark are among the 60+ organisations to have committed to the new US version of the Ellen MacArthur Foundation's Plastics Pact, which aims to create a fully circular economy for plastics.
Magnum to roll out recycled plastic ice cream tubs globally
Ice cream brand Magnum is set to introduce plastic tubs consisting of recycled plastic across all its markets, a move that will see an estimated 160,000kg of certified recycled material used by the end of 2020 across Europe.
MPs outline support for 'all-in' deposit return system
A group of 20 MPs have signed a motion calling for all materials to be covered by a UK deposit return scheme for cups, bottles and containers to boost recycling rates.
John Elkington: Businesses should 'think like insurgents' to spur green recovery efforts
EXCLUSIVE: Many organisations will need to "regenerate" approaches to environmental, societal and economic business models in the wake of the financial damage caused by the coronavirus pandemic, according to Volans' chairman and chief pollinator John Elkington, who has called on companies to "think like an insurgent".
New platform to help corporates forge circular economy partnerships
Environmental NGO BVRio has launched a new online platform connecting circular economy projects with corporates and impact investors, whose aim is to help small programmes scale-up and large organisations put sufficient finance behind their resource goals.
Starbucks reintroduces reusable cups to stores
Starbucks has stopped a temporary ban on reusable cups in stores that was introduced at the start of the coronavirus pandemic.
Brits cut bottled water consumption by half during lockdown
The proportion of UK adults regularly purchasing plastic bottled water almost halved during lockdown, new research from YouGov has concluded.
The 'Sustainability Innovators' mindset
What is the right mindset for sustainability innovation? This blog introduces four characteristics to help innovators adopt the right mentality and approach for a sustainable future.
Amount of plastics in oceans will quadruple by 2040, major new research finds
The world's plastic pollution problem is vastly outpacing efforts to stop it, meaning that the volume of plastics in oceans globally will be four times higher in 2040 than in 2016, new research backed by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation has concluded.
Mastercard unveils biodegradable, ocean-bound and recyclable plastics card drive
Mastercard has launched a new initiative to get its customers to switch to cards made from recycled, biodegradable and ocean plastics, in a bid to reduce the amount of excess plastic that is landfilled each year.