Coca-Cola GB has announced that its recycling partnership with Merlin Entertainment will continue over the summer following its initial launch in 2018.

Coca-Cola reverse vending machine

The programme will see visitors rewarded for using specifically designed Coca-Cola reverse vending machines, offering 50% off entry at Merlin Entertainment in exchange for recycling an empty plastic bottle.

Launched on 8 July, 23 machines have been installed at UK Merlin attractions, including Alton Towers Resort, Thorpe Park Resort, Chessington World of Adventures Resort and Legoland Windsor Resort. The reverse vending machines have also been rolled out to additional sites this year, including Sea Life Blackpool and Warwick Castle Resort.

In addition, Coca-Cola’s Freestyle machine will also be available at Thorpe Park Resort, allowing consumers to pre-pay for drinks using a special chip in a refillable cup.

The partnership with Merlin Entertainments builds on several actions taken by Coca-Cola GB and Coca-Cola European Partners (CCEP) as part of the business’ sustainable packaging strategy, first launched in 2017.

Leendert den Hollander, vice president & general manager at CCEP, said: “Through the bold action plan outlined as part of our sustainable packaging strategy, we’re determined to make recycling on-the-go easier for consumers and lead the way towards a robust circular economy in Great Britain.

“Ultimately, we want to reach the point where 100% of our packaging is collected, reused or recycled – and where none of it ends up as litter in our streets, parks or in the oceans. Our continued partnership with Merlin Entertainments forms an important part of this, as we seek to reward and recognise people for recycling their used plastic bottles – and encourage others who may not be actively recycling to follow suit.”

Sandra Hazel, group head of being a force for good at Merlin Entertainments, added: “We are delighted to extend this initiative after great success in 2018. We care about recycling and know that our customers do too. This partnership is a great way to work together to protect our planet and is just one of the initiatives we are invested in to increase recycling at our attractions.”

The reverse vending machines will be in place until 17 October 2019 at Alton Towers Resort, Thorpe Park Resort, Chessington World of Adventures Resort and the Legoland Windsor Resort and until 31 March 2020 at all other participating attractions.