Buzzwords explained: Circular Economy

Even renewable materials won’t last forever if they’re not used sustainably. That’s why it’s so important to make the most of everything we use. This is all part of a circular economy and creating a sustainable future. Find out more about the circular economy…

What is a circular economy?
At a really basic level, a circular economy is about recycling. But in reality it’s much more than that. It effectively joins the ends of the linear economy (make, use, dispose) through recycling. You might know it better as the ‘reduce, reuse, recycle’ mantra.

It tries to make the useful life of a product as long as possible, by recycling materials instead of using new, virgin materials. As well as using fewer materials and creating less waste, manufacturing recycled materials is a cleaner process. Less energy is needed, so the environmental impact is much lower.

Find out more about the circular economy from the Ellen Macarthur Foundation

3 ways the Coca-Cola system supports a circular economy
We’re committed to the circular economy as a more sustainable way of creating and using products. We’ve been working to streamline our resource efficiency for several years now, and our new sustainable packaging strategy outlines how we’re actively helping to create a stronger circular economy.

Read about our ambition for a sustainable future

1. Packaging and manufacturing
All of Coca-Cola European Partners' (CCEP) drinks packaging is 100% recyclable and has been since 2012. CCEP are also doubling the amount of recycled plastic in all their plastic bottles in Great Britain, from 25% to 50% by 2020. To help achieve this goal, back in 2011 they invested to build the UK’s largest and most technically advanced PET bottle reprocessing plant, which is based in Lincolnshire.

2. Marketing and advertising
Coca-Cola Great Britain launched our biggest ever campaign to communicate the importance of recycling to millions of people. At the heart of this is our Love Story advert, featuring two love-struck plastic bottles who are parted and reunited as they go through the recovery and recycling process.

Watch the recycling advert ,Love Story

3. Reforming the UK recycling system
Collecting materials so they can be recovered and reused is a big part of our future sustainability plan. Coca-Cola Great Britain have partnered with various groups, such as WRAP, Keep Scotland Beautiful, Keep Wales Tidy and Keep Britain Tidy, to support anti-littering and clean-up initiatives. We are also working with DEFRA (Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs) to help with their national litter strategy.

Take a look at some of the campaigns we support: