Coca-Cola multipack cans across Europe are soon to be fitted with a new recyclable paperboard topper which will replace plastic shrink film, in a bid to drive down packaging waste.
The move, between Coca-Cola and its strategic bottling partners – Coca-Cola HBC and Coca-Cola European Partners (CCEP) - is a first for the non-alcohol ready-to-drink industry.
Rolling out in Ireland, the Netherlands and Poland early next year, the new KeelClip technology is expected to save 2,000 tonnes of plastic and 3,000 tonnes of CO2 annually when it has been rolled out across all of Coca-Cola HBC’s European Union markets by the end of 2021.
The KeelClip will be used on all can multi-packs of up to eight cans while larger can multi packs will be bound by a carton pack.
CCEP committed in October to removing all “unnecessary or hard to recycle plastic” from its portfolio, avoiding the use of more than 11,000 tonnes of virgin plastic a year across the countries where it operates.
Coca-Cola HBC group supply chain director Marcel Martin said: “KeelClip is our latest investment in innovative, sustainable packaging solutions.
“Alongside the four water brands we introduced this year in 100% recycled PET bottles, the increased use of recycled PET and continued lightweighting across the portfolio, KeelClip is another demonstration of our commitment to delivering our World Without Waste goals.”
CCEP vice president Joe Franses added: “Innovation is a key principle of our sustainable packaging work and the application of this fully recyclable paperboard KeelClip, which comprises a top board that the cans clip into and a central cardboard ‘keel’ - similar to a ship’s keel - that stabilises the pack, is another example of how we are delivering on our commitment to remove all unnecessary and hard to recycle single-use plastic from our products.”