European soft drinks industry welcomes EU Green Deal in working towards a carbon neutral Europe

European soft drinks industry welcomes EU Green Deal in working towards a carbon neutral Europe

We welcome the EU Green Deal

UNESDA member companies have been driving sustainability throughout their value chain for the past 30 years and we fully support the EU Green Deal and its ambition of making Europe the world’s first climate-neutral continent by 2050.  We agree that achieving a circular economy requires the full mobilisation of industry and our sector is ready to play its part in realising this and in also delivering the new Farm to Fork strategy for sustainable food.

We welcome the Commission’s intention to develop requirements to ensure EU packaging is reusable or recyclable in an economically viable way by 2030. UNESDA has already committed that by 2025 100% of its plastic packaging will be recyclable and will contain an average minimum of 25% recycled content.

Reducing environmental footprint throughout the supply chain

The sector is working to reduce its environmental footprint – from production and distribution through to packaging, collection, recycling and reuse:  eg.

  • In production and bottling facilities members have invested in state-of-the-art, low-energy equipment to optimise the reduction and reuse of energy, water and raw materials;
  • In their supply chains members have implemented sustainable sourcing and agriculture practices and production is sited close to markets so as to limit emissions linked to energy and transport;
  • At point of sale the industry eliminated CFCs from refrigeration and cooling systems over 20 years ago.

Focusing on packaging collection, recycling and reuse

Our sector is  working hard to continue to be frontrunners in making both our products and packaging more sustainable. Beverage packaging is already the most collected packaging in the EU and soft drink companies have been instrumental in setting up and running many of the packaging recovery organisations across the continent.   The sector is committed to building a circular economy via well-functioning collection schemes, increasing and optimising packaging collection rates and supporting the ambitious targets of the EU Single Use Plastics Directive.

Our industry uses a range of packaging materials and has placed research and investment behind light-weighting and reducing technical barriers to recycling.

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