News & Events

Tuesday 02 July, 2013


Coca-Cola Enterprises Signs Soft Drinks Sustainability Roadmap, a new initiative by Defra to reduce carbon emissions

A landmark agreement to help reduce the 4.5 million tonnes of greenhouse gases a year produced by the soft drinks industry in the UK has been launched by Food Minister, David Heath, at an event today.  The Soft Drinks Sustainability Roadmap provides a framework for businesses to improve sustainability as well as their bottom line.

Fifty percent of major soft drinks producers or suppliers, including Coca-Cola Enterprises and Britvic, have already signed up, with an aim for a further twenty-five percent to sign up by the end of the year.

The plan includes the entire soft drinks production process, from sourcing ingredients to recycling packaging.  It sets clear objectives for businesses to further improve their use of resources, but gives them the flexibility on how to meet them in the most cost effective way.

The initiative was developed in conjunction with the soft drinks industry, trade associations and WRAP.  It builds on Defra funded research.

Recommendations include:

  • Reducing the amount of water used in manufacturing to help limit consumption and save money;
  • Improving refrigeration to boost energy efficiency;
  • Using low carbon fertiliser to reduce the footprint of fruit-based soft drinks by as much as 20%; and
  • Improving co-operation between manufacturers, suppliers, retailers and waste management companies to improve recyclability and recycling of packaging by consumers.

Food Minister David Heath said: “The soft drinks sector is a business success story, worth over £14 billion to the UK economy and employing over 12,000 people, so it is vital that we work together to improve the environmental performance of the industry. Dealing with resources properly is good for business as well as the environment and will help boost the economy and create jobs. Our voluntary agreement is about ensuring every step of the production process is efficient, saves energy and reduces waste.”

 

Dr Richard Swannell, Director at WRAP, said: “WRAP has been pleased to work closely with Defra, and the soft drinks industry over the last few years to develop the Soft Drinks Sustainability Roadmap. The Roadmap will help the industry tackle the areas where significant savings can be made along the whole supply chain - enhancing the sustainability of the sector and helping secure its future prosperity. This type of collaborative sector working has real business benefits, as proven by our work on the Courtauld Commitment and The Federation House Commitment.”

 

Gavin Partington, the British Soft Drinks Association’s Director General, said: “Companies in our sector are among those with ambitious targets to reduce their environmental impact and the sustainability roadmap provides a great opportunity to extend best practice and deliver long term cost savings. “We are pleased that companies have already signed up to support the Roadmap process, and we look forward to working together to minimise the environmental impact of the sector.”

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