The move supports its work, in partnership with Coca-Cola, to remove all unnecessary or hard-to-recycle plastic from its portfolio, avoiding the use of more than 11,000 metric tonnes (12,125 U.S. tons) of virgin plastic a year across Western Europe.
Initially, Coca-Cola European Partners will launch the new, PEFC-certified [PEFC is the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification, a sustainable forest certification] recyclable and sustainably sourced paperboard CanCollar in the Balearic Islands in November 2020, a first in Europe. Innovative packaging design is a core principle of Coca-Cola’s World Without Waste strategy. Through collaboration with WestRock packaging materials and application machinery, Coca-Cola European Partners will replace the existing can handle solution to save more than 18 tonnes (19,841 tons) of plastic annually.
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Coca-Cola European Partners has invested 2.6 million euros in its Barcelona plant to support this initiative. The installation of WestRock’s CanCollar Fortuna™ manufacturing equipment will enable multipack cans to be grouped in a sustainable and environmentally friendly way, with a process that does not require the use of glue or adhesives.
“The agreement with WestRock exemplifies our clear commitment to reduce plastic in our secondary packaging,” says Joe Franses, Vice President of Sustainability, Coca-Cola European Partners. “By the end of 2020, we will have removed more than 4,000 tonnes of hard to recycle plastic from our secondary packaging in Western Europe. It’s through collaborating on innovative packaging solutions like CanCollar® that we are able to do this.”
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“We are proud of our longstanding partnership with Coca-Cola. For 70 years we have supported Coca-Cola in bringing innovation to global beverage markets. CanCollar is the latest initiative supporting Coca-Cola’s vision to create a World Without Waste,” adds Dwayne Irvin, Vice President of Enterprise Solutions at WestRock.