Coca-Cola discloses it puts out 3 million tonnes of plastic packaging a year

Photo: Pixabay


March 14, 2019






March 14, 2019





Coca-Cola has revealed for the first time it produces 3 million tonnes of plastic packaging a year – equivalent to 200,000 bottles a minute, The Guardian has reported.

The data from the soft drinks giant was provided to the campaigner Ellen MacArthur, who is pushing for major companies and governments to do more to tackle plastic pollution, The Guardian wrote.

The figures – which the company has refused in the past to disclose – reveal the amount of plastic packaging Coca-Cola produced in 2017. The company did not reveal the scale of its bottle production but when its packaging footprint is translated into 500ml PET plastic bottles, it amounts to about 108 billion bottles a year, more than a fifth of the world’s PET bottle output of about 500 billion bottles a year, the report reads.

Coca-Cola is one of 31 companies – including Mars, Nestlé and Danone – that have revealed how much plastic packaging they create as part of a drive for transparency by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, a charity that works with business and education to accelerate the transition to a circular economy. Combined, they produce 8 million tonnes of plastic packaging a year.

But the majority of the 150 companies who have signed up to MacArthur’s global commitment to reduce plastic pollution are still refusing to publicly disclose figures on their own plastic packaging production. These include Pepsi Co, H&M, L’Oréal, Walmart, Marks & Spencer and Burberry – which was heavily criticized last year when it was revealed that the company burned GBP 28 million of stock in a year to prevent counterfeiting.

Burberry was heavily criticized last year when it was revealed that it burned GBP 28 million of stock in a year

A total of 150 companies have signed up to the foundation’s global commitment to reduce plastic waste, which aims to:

  • Eliminate unnecessary plastic packaging and move from single-use to reusable packaging.
  • Innovate to ensure 100% of plastic packaging can be easily and safely reused, recycled, or composted by 2025.
  • Create a circular economy in plastic by significantly increasing the volumes of plastic reused or recycled into new packaging.

A first step by many of the companies who have signed the commitment was more transparency. Alongside Coca-Cola’s data, Nestlé revealed it puts out 1.7 million tonnes of plastic packaging annually, Unilever 610,000 tonnes, and Danone 750,000 tonnes.

Only two global raw material plastic producers have signed the commitment – Indorama and Borealis – and no airlines, food chains or hotels, The Guardian wrote.

According to a study published in 2015 in the journal Science, an estimated 8 million tonnes of plastic waste end up in oceans every year, and the quantity could multiply tenfold in the business-as-usual scenario.

Comments (0)

Be the first one to comment on this article.

Enter Your Comment
Please wait... Please fill in the required fields. There seems to be an error, please refresh the page and try again. Your comment has been sent.

Related Articles

Siemens Gamesa world first offshore wind turbine recyclable blades

Siemens Gamesa installs world’s first offshore wind turbine with recyclable blades

09 August 2022 - RWE started to test a wind turbine from Siemens Gamesa with fully recyclable blades at its offshore project Kaskasi

2021 municipal waste report Croatia continues progress, but targets still unreachable

2021 municipal waste report: Croatia continues progress but targets still unreachable

04 August 2022 - The country continued to make progress in almost all important sectors of waste management, but it was not enough to achieve the set goals

waste to energy energy crisis vienna

Waste management sector can help Europe lower gas consumption

04 August 2022 - The sector conducts recycling and recovery operations and produces heat and energy through incineration and anaerobic digestion

Island of Tilos – zero waste gem in Aegean Sea

04 August 2022 - The island of Tilos in the Aegean Sea is implementing a waste management program that...