Coca-Cola India launched new bottles made from 100% recycled PET plastic material (rPET) in Andhra Pradesh. This is the first time in India that any bottle made with 100% rPET is being used for food/beverage.
Aligned with its global commitment of creating a ‘World Without Waste’, the company has set a goal of using at least 50% recycled content in its packaging by 2030; working towards using more recycled content in its packaging. The company has been working towards this goal for years and has made consistent progress in reducing the use of virgin plastic across its value chain globally. Currently, 90% of the company’s packaging is recyclable while 15% of PET used is recycled (rPET) across the globe.
rPET bottles are made from food grade recycled polyethylene terephthalate (PET). When PET bottles are recycled, the plastic is recycled as per the technologies that are approved by US FDA and European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) for food grade recycled material, and reformed into new PET bottles, reducing the need for virgin plastic for producing PET Bottles. The use of rPET bottles not only conserves natural resources but also reduces the amount of plastic waste that ends up in the larger ecosystem.
The new rPET packaging is available for the company’s packaged drinking water brand, Kinley, in 1-liter bottles. The new bottle features a unique label displaying, ‘100% made from recycled food grade plastic, marking a major milestone for Coca-Cola in India in realizing its circular economy endeavours. This was possible only after the Food Safety Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) approved the use of recycled PET in food packaging, subject to adherence to their guidelines, after a thorough review of food safety.
Enrique Ackermann, Vice President, Technical and Innovation, Coca-Cola India and Southwest Asia said, “Aligned with our vision of creating a World Without Waste, we are constantly looking for ways to reduce our environmental footprint and contribute towards creating a circular economy. We are proud to be the first beverage company in India to offer our consumers a sustainable choice of packaging, by launching Kinley bottles made from 100% recycled PET. Our new bottles made with food-grade rPET have value beyond their initial use, as they are fully recyclable and can be repurposed into new bottles. This is also an endeavour on our part to complement the Government of India’s ‘Swachh Bharat Mission’ initiative.
Dr S B P P Rammohan, Managing Director, Sri Sarvaraya Sugars Limited, Franchise Bottling Partner of Coca-Cola in Andhra Pradesh and Telangana said, “This move towards using recycled PET in packaging, aligns with our government’s vision of sustainable plastic use, and we are proud to be associated with the Coca-Cola System in India as the first movers in this sustainability initiative.”
Utsav Dixit, Head of Sustainability at ALPLA India, PET Preform Supply Partner of Coca-Cola said, “In addition to enabling Coca-Cola’s vision of creating a World Without Waste, the launch is aligned with ALPLA’s Global Sustainability targets. In 2018, ALPLA, as partner of the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, signed a Global Commitment. Our mission by 2025 is to produce 100% recyclable packaging with 25% recycled content on average, and this launch is a big step in that direction in India. We are proud to be associated with Coca-Cola and will continue to do everything it takes to enable a World Without Waste.”
In December 2022, Coca-Cola Bangladesh launched 100% rPET bottles, making it the first market in the Southwest Asia (SWA) region to introduce Kinley water bottles in 2-liter packages. The Coca-Cola Company now offers 100% rPET bottles in more than about 40 markets.