Cardboard Handles Replace Plastic in Coca-Cola Package

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by KnowESG,

DS Smith PLC

KnowESG_Cardboard Handles Replace Plastic in Coca-Cola Package
Image courtesy of Pexels

DS Smith PLC, the prominent global company specialising in sustainable fibre-based packaging, has joined forces with Coca-Cola HBC Austria in a groundbreaking collaboration.

Together, they aim to replace plastic handles on 1.5-litre PET soft drink multi-packs with an outer cardboard-based packaging solution. This innovative plastic substitute, known as DS Smith Lift Up, is set to hit Austrian supermarkets starting in September 2023.

DS Smith Lift Up is a cutting-edge corrugated handle that boasts 100% recyclability. It not only enhances the convenience of carrying for consumers but also aligns with the collective effort to shift towards kraft paper and cardboard-based solutions, effectively slashing approximately 200 tonnes of plastic waste annually for Coca-Cola HBC Austria.

Both DS Smith and Coca-Cola HBC share a robust commitment to developing innovative packaging solutions that are not only fully recyclable but also employ the minimal amount of material necessary.

The development of DS Smith Lift Up leveraged DS Smith's Circular Design Metrics approach, resulting in a substantial reduction in the carbon footprint associated with packaging and manufacturing.

This innovation is adaptable to various bottle sizes and is produced in collaboration with Krones, a leading packaging machine manufacturer. The handle offers a comfortable grip, making it easy for consumers to carry their products while keeping them secure within their sustainable packaging. Initially designed for PET bottles intended for home consumption, this solution is a step towards a greener future.

Stefano Rossi, CEO of the Packaging Solutions Division at DS Smith, expressed pride in their partnership, emphasising the reduction of unnecessary waste and single-use plastics.

The DS Smith Lift Up concept, born from the Circular Design Metrics approach, prioritises minimal material usage, reduced environmental impact, and an attractive in-store presence. Collaboration with trusted partners like Coca-Cola HBC and Krones is pivotal in the quest to eliminate single-use plastics and drive innovative, scalable change.

Sustainable design remains central to DS Smith's mission, and this project exemplifies the potential for packaging innovation to lead the way towards a more sustainable future for manufacturers, retailers, and consumers.

Marcel Martin, Chief Corporate Affairs and Sustainability Officer at CCHBC, emphasised the uniqueness of this packaging solution for 1.5-litre multipacks of Coca-Cola, Fanta, and Sprite. It reflects their entrepreneurial mindset, a strong belief in collaboration with trusted partners, and a commitment to achieving net-zero emissions by 2040.

The Dow Jones Sustainability Index named Coca-Cola HBC the most sustainable beverage company in the world in 2022 as a result of their sustainability efforts.

Their dedication to sustainability is further underscored by top sustainability scores in the S&P Global Sustainability Yearbook 2023 and the MSCI ESG Ratings for the ninth consecutive year.

Nevertheless, they acknowledge the substantial challenge ahead in building a more sustainable business and remain committed to continuous innovation, collaboration, and investment to deliver their drinks sustainably.

This innovative packaging solution for 1.5-litre PET multi-packs will be utilised for Coca-Cola, Fanta, Sprite, and Mezzo Mix brands in Austria.

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Source: What They Think

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