Here at The Coca-Cola Company, we’re on a sustainability journey. We’re continually moving towards our goal of a World Without Waste, so we’re constantly looking for new ways to make our packaging as sustainable as possible.

Today we’re taking a big step closer to that goal, with the news that the materials we use to make GLACÉAU smartwater bottles are changing for the better – and changing this year. Here’s everything you need to know…

Alright, rPET?

In 2019, bottles across the smartwater lineup – that’s 600ml and 850ml, still, sparkling and flavour variants – are moving to 100% recycled plastic (otherwise known as rPET). That means that the entire bottle will have already been used at least once before, and removes the need to use new, virgin PET.

And that’s a big deal in terms of plastic. As the third largest on-the-go bottled water brand in Great Britain, smartwater’s change to 100% rPET will mean the equivalent of 3,100 tonnes of recycled plastic being put to good use instead of virgin plastic each year!

It also means that smartwater will become the only bottled water brand to make all of its bottles out of recycled plastic in Great Britain – that’s 120 million recycled bottles every year – which we’re really proud of.

But that’s not all. At the same time, we’re continuing to work with local re-processors to double the amount of recycled PET used in all of our plastic bottles – across 20 brands – to at least 50%. The best news is that these new packs will be launched ahead of schedule in early 2020, and further reinforce Coca-Cola as the country’s biggest user of recycled PET plastic.  

Together, these initiatives will help ensure that more than 23,000 tonnes of virgin plastic will no longer be used by the business in Great Britain from 2020 onwards.

Refreshingly clear

To help us reclaim and reuse even more used plastic than ever, Coca-Cola is also replacing the current iconic green Sprite bottle with a clear pack in order to make it easier to recycle back into new drinks bottles.

Sprite, which is already 100% recyclable, will also increase the amount of rPET it contains to 50% next year. The change, which will come into effect from September, is a further sign of our commitment to support recycling and the circular economy in Great Britain.

“Congratulations to Coca-Cola on making this significant step to help our natural environment,” Environment Minister Thérèse Coffey of the news. “These initiatives, including using more recycled plastic in their bottles, set a fine example to other large businesses and we hope that others follow suit.

“We all have a responsibility to our environment. Through our landmark Resources and Waste Strategy the government is committed to going further and faster to reduce, reuse and recycle for a more circular economy.” 

These changes are important steps, but they’re just a few small parts of a much bigger puzzle. Our ‘World Without Waste’ vision also means helping to collect and recycle a bottle or can for every single one we sell by 2030, investing in state-of-the-art recycling facilities, and exploring new ways to package our products.

Want more info? You can learn loads more about our sustainability vision here. And be sure to look out for our new bottles later this year.