Diageo to remove plastic from beer packaging

Guinness packs will be 100pc biodegradable and recyclable

Guinness packs will be 100pc biodegradable and recyclable

The plastic shrink wrap now used to house the products, and the flexible plastic six-pack rings used to keep the cans together, will be replaced by cardboard sleeves and boxes, in a move which will reduce Diageo's plastic waste footprint by 400 tonnes per year.

Plastic ring carriers and shrink wrap will be also removed from packs of Harp, Rockshore and Smithwick's beers, as part of Diageo's £16m initiative. Diageo has pledged to purchase all of the pulp used to make the cardboard packaging, which is classed as widely recyclable and fully biodegradable, from sustainable sources.

The multi-can packs will be replaced by cardboard packs. The plan is then to supply global markets including the United Kingdom with the new cardboard carriers by 2020, resulting in a staggering 400 tonne reduction in plastic use across the brewer's packaging chains.

Diageo's bottling and packaging plant in Northern Ireland will be the first site producing the new packs, with the firm investing £8m in its east Belfast plant. The facility packages products that are exported...

Diageo says that now under 5pc of its total packaging is plastic and this change will reduce plastic usage by over 400 tonnes annually.

Mark Sandys, Global Head of Beer, Baileys and Smirnoff, said: "For 260 years Guinness has played a vital role in the communities around us".

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