SWITZERLAND, Vevey. Nestlé has said it will invest up to €1.9bn to ‘lead the shift’ from virgin plastics to food-grade recycled plastics and develop ‘innovative sustainable packaging’.
Nestlé said it aims to reduce its use of virgin plastics by one third by 2025. The investment builds on its commitment to make 100% of its packaging recyclable or reusable by 2025 and the inauguration of the Nestlé Institute of Packaging Science last year, both of which will contribute towards the Swiss food giant's goal of achieving net zero emissions by 2050.
Food grade plastic packaging plays an important role in ensuring food safety and quality. But most plastics are difficult to recycle for food packaging – leading to limited supply of food grade recycled plastics. Nestlé wants to combat this and 'create a market' by committing to source up to 2 mill. t of food-grade recycled plastics. Nestlé also revealed it will allocate more than €1.4bn. to 'pay a premium' for these materials between now and 2025.
Nestlé added packaging innovation – including new materials, refill systems and recycling solutions – is another 'key challenge'. In addition to the work already underway at the Nestlé Institute of Packaging Sciences, the company will launch a €233 mill. sustainable packaging venture fund to invest in start-up companies that focus on these areas.
"No plastic should end up in landfill or as litter," said Mark Schneider, CEO of Nestle. "Making recycled plastics safe for food is an enormous challenge for our industry. That is why in addition to minimizing plastics use and collecting waste, we want to close the loop and make more plastics infinitely recyclable. We are taking bold steps to create a wider market for food graderecycled plastics and boost innovation in the packaging industry. We welcome others to join us on this journey."