The announcement from Coca-Cola Ireland is part of the firm's global World Without Waste commitment to recycle as many plastic bottles as it sells by 2030

Coke bottle

Coca-Cola says it will eliminate 2,000 tonnes of virgin plastic in circulation in Ireland annually (Credit: needpix)

Coca-Cola Ireland has said its plastic bottles of up to 500ml will be made from 50% recycled plastic.

The innovation, in conjunction with its local bottling partner Coca-Cola Hellenic Bottling Company (HBC), will see products over 500ml made with 25% recycled material.

This will cover the the firm’s entire range, including Diet Coke, Fanta, Sprite and Coca-Cola Zero Sugar.

The drinks giant says as part of a wider crackdown on packaging, its recent investment in recycled polyethylene terephthalate (PET) will cut 2,000 tonnes of virgin plastic from circulation in Ireland annually.

Coca-Cola Ireland country manager Petre Șandru said: “We are proud to be making the move to 50% recycled plastic for our ‘on-the-go’ packs as we look to increase the use of recycled plastics.

“We recognise that with our market-leading brands we have a responsibility to help reduce our plastic use and to make it easier for our consumers to recycle.”

Coca-Cola HBC Ireland and Northern Ireland general manager Matthieu Seguin added: “As the bottling partner for The Coca-Cola Company Ireland, we have been at the forefront of the sustainable packaging drive globally and we are ahead of the global targets to integrate more recycled material within our supply chain.

“The changes announced mark a significant milestone in our journey to a World Without Waste.

“We are committed to accelerating the move to sustainable packaging in Ireland and through engagement with our national recycling partners such as Repak, we can dramatically reduce the impact of packaging waste on the environment.”


Policies set out by Coca-Cola Ireland to reduce virgin plastic

This announcement is part of The Coca-Cola Company’s global World Without Waste campaign.

Set-out in January 2018, the firm made an “industry-first” commitment to recycle the equivalent of every bottle or can it sells by 2030.

The Coca-Cola Company president and CEO James Quincey said: “Consumers around the world care about our planet. They want and expect companies like ours to be leaders and help make a litter-free world possible.

“Through our ‘World Without Waste’ vision, we are investing in our planet and in our packaging to help make the world’s packaging problem a thing of the past.”

Alongside the introduction of more recycled plastic in its bottles, Coca-Cola Ireland said earlier this year that its water brand Deep RiverRock is being made with 100% recycled plastic.

Coca Cola Ireland
Ireland’s environment minister Richard Bruton (left), with Matthieu Seguin, general manager of Coca-Cola HBC Ireland and Northern Ireland, said he welcomed ‘such industry leadership’ from Coca-Cola Ireland to reduce virgin plastic in the country (Credit: Coca-Cola Ireland)

The country’s environment minister Richard Bruton said: “We’ve a long road to travel to better manage how we use and dispose of plastic more sustainably.

“This announcement by Deep RiverRock will remove over 500 tonnes of virgin plastic from our waste streams and I welcome such industry leadership in pioneering parts of this journey.

“There are opportunities right through the supply chain for entrepreneurs to make an impact and we need to create a framework to ensure that these opportunities can be seized.

“That will be one of my priorities as part of our all of government plan which will be published in the coming weeks.”

Brought in from the start of June, the Deep RiverRock logo has been replaced by the “100% Recycled Bottle” label on the front of its packs.

Mr Seguin added: “We’re proud to introduce Deep RiverRock’s first ever 100% recycled bottle range.

“At Coca‑Cola HBC Ireland and Northern Ireland all of our products are already 100% recyclable but we have been working tirelessly to make our packaging more sustainable, and to encourage actions that inspire recycling and the responsible disposal of waste.

“This change across our Deep RiverRock PET portfolio highlights this commitment to taking meaningful action throughout the business and is just one of a number of actions we are taking as part of our commitment to creating a world without waste.”