Packaging plays an essential role in the safety, quality and
shelf-life of food and in conveying important information to consumers about issues such as use, storage, nutrition, ingredients and origin. In terms of environmental impacts, it contributes relatively little to the total product footprint. But it is a very visible use of resources and one which needs to be kept under constant review to ensure an optimal balance between function and impact.
Packaging also forms part of the WRAP Courtauld
Commitment. The final out turn from phase 2
shows that food and drink manufacturers along
with other signatories have delivered an on-target
10% reduction in the carbon impact of primary and
single use transit packaging over the three year
reporting period. This has been achieved despite
an increase in production volume and is equivalent
to saving some 594,000 tonnes CO2e. Most of the
reduction has been achieved due to the work of
signatories in optimising packaging. The equivalent
weight reduction was 10.7%.
The number of FDF members signed up to the
On-Pack Recycling Label Scheme - a UK-wide
consistent messaging system to help consumers
recycle more - currently stands at 23.
FDF has been part of a unique consortium of
packaging and food industry organisations, local
authorities and retailers who together with WRAP
helped develop and launch a new communications
initiative entitled 'Fresher for Longer' in March this
year, under the Love Food Hate Waste programme.
The initiative, which is supported by a range of new
creative materials, is designed to show how food
packaging and the way consumers use it can help
reduce food waste by maximising the shelf life of
products once they get them home. It has been
underpinned by some new independent research
entitled 'Consumer attitudes to food waste and
packaging', also commissioned by FDF and the
other consortium members, comprising the largest
such survey of UK consumers on this subject. This
found that many consumers are not making best
use of the information on pack, or the packaging
itself, to keep food fresher for longer.
In recognition of the unique nature of this
campaign Fresher for Longer received a special
Editor's Award at the 2013 Packaging News
FDF and the other partners are currently working
on a second phase of 'Fresher for Longer' due for
launch in early 2014 and which aims to give the
campaign more traction and buy in among local
authorities, retailers and brands.
Case studies: Packaging
KP Snacks has an ongoing environmental programme and is working
to reduce packaging across its range. Its three-phase packaging
project has achieved significant results..
Phase 1 moved Hula Hoop seven-bag multipacks from pillow to flow-wrap
format. This generated annual savings of 163 tonnes of cardboard, over
30,000 fewer pallets for delivery, 70 tonnes less film for packaging, and 580
fewer lorry journeys for delivery.
Then, in 2012, the company invested in new flow-wrapping equipment at
its McCoy's crisp factory in Teeside. The result, a narrower, tighter six-pack
multipack, requires less film, allowing more multipacks in each outer case.
meant 23.4% less packaging film, 10% less cardboard, 10% fewer pallets and
10% fewer trailer journeys.
A further phase in Q4 2012 involved reducing the height of the outer case
to allow an extra layer on the pallet. Trials
proved successful and KP Snacks implemented
this early in 2013, meaning 17,000 fewer
pallets a year, 329 fewer trailer journeys, and
approximately 60 tonnes less corrugated board.
Coca-Cola Enterprises Ltd
Working with the Carbon Trust, Coca-Cola Enterprises discovered that
nearly half its total footprint comes from packaging. The company has
committed to reducing the carbon footprint of its drinks by a third by 2020.
By re-designing its packaging, CCE are using less packaging than ever. Around
of its packs are easily recycled and its PlantBottle concept ensures that its
plastic bottles contain up to 25% recycled content and 22.5% plant-based
Continuum Recycling, a joint venture with Eco Plastics, has transformed UK
recycling. Recently reaching the milestone of half a billion bottles processed
in its first
year, the plant helps CCE save 33,000 tonnes of CO2 a year – equivalent to
15,700 cars off the road.
CCE also work hard to engage with consumers – following its recycling promotions
at the London 2012 Olympics, 70% of visitors surveyed said they would be more
likely to recycle at home and 93% said they would be more likely to recycle
'on the go'.
In this report:
Last reviewed: 16 Dec 2013