Coca-Cola Europe commits to use 100% recycled plastic
On its journey to eliminate new virgin oil-based plastics, Coca-Cola (Western Europe) has announced its transition to 100% recycled plastic (rPET) bottles in the Netherlands and Norway.
This transition follows its elimination of new virgin oil-based plastics in Sweden, switching to 100% rPET bottles in December 2019. As of October 2020, the Netherlands will transition all its local small plastic bottles to 100% rPET, with large bottles following in 2021.
“Today’s announcement that Coca-Cola European Partners Netherlands and Coca-Cola European Partners Norway are making the switch to 100% rPET marks a vitally important step forward on our journey to eliminating new virgin oil-based plastic across all our plastic bottles within a decade.” commented Joe Franses, Vice President Sustainability at Coca-Cola European Partners.
This switch will add to the 50% rPET that already exists in the Netherlands, eliminating over 10,000 tonnes of new virgin oil-based plastics, and providing a 21% reduction in the country’s carbon footprint.
In addition, due the first half of 2021, Norway will switch to 100% rPET for all its locally produced bottles. The transition will remove 4,300 tonnes of new virgin oil-based plastics a year. This switch will deliver a 28% reduction in Norway’s carbon footprint.
In the Netherlands and Norway, Coca-Cola is reported to be the first company in the respective regions to switch their entire local portfolio to 100% rPET. These switches support the company’s ambitions in Western Europe to eliminate new virgin oil-based plastics in the next decade.
Contributing factors to the successful transition to 100% recycled plastics in the Netherlands and Norway is its rapidly expanding use of deposit return schemes. The company believes that a well designed deposit scheme can play an important role in the delivery of a circular economy.
“Coca-Cola in Western Europe is a firm supporter of the implementation of well-designed Deposit Return Schemes across Europe, recognising the role they can play as part of local, closed-loop recycling systems. We also remain committed to supporting innovative packaging and recycling technologies to help us to reach our target of 50% recycled content across all our plastic bottles by 2023,” added Franses.
Coca-Cola Sustainability Action Plan
As part of Coca-Cola’s Sustainability Action Plan the company has pledged that, by 2025 Coca-Cola will collect a can or bottle for every one that it sells and ensure that all its packaging is 100% recyclable.
In addition by 2023, the company will ensure that at least 50% of the content of its PET bottle will be from recycled content.
5 minutes with... Janthana Kaenprakhamroy, CEO, Tapoly
Founder and CEO of award-winning insurtech firm Tapoly, Janthana Kaenprakhamroy heads up Europe’s first on-demand insurance platform for the gig economy, winning industry awards, innovating in the digital insurance space, and leading with inclusivity.
Here, Business Chief talks to Janthana about her leadership style and skills.
What do you do, in a nutshell?
I’m founder and CEO of Tapoly, a digital MGA providing a full stack of commercial lines insurance specifically for SMEs and freelancers, as well as a SaaS solution to connect insurers with their distribution partners. We build bespoke, end-to-end platforms encompassing the whole customer journey, but can also integrate our APIs within existing systems. We were proud to win Insurance Provider of the Year at the British Small Business Awards 2018 and receive silver in the Insurtech category at the Efma & Accenture Innovation in Insurance Awards 2019.
How would you describe your leadership style?
I try to be as inclusive a leader as possible. I’m committed to creating space for everyone to shine. Many of the roles at Tapoly are performed by women and I speak at industry events to encourage more people to get involved in insurance/insurtech. Similarly, I always try to maintain a growth mindset. I think it’s important to retain values to support learning and development, like reliability, working hard and punctuality.
What’s the best leadership advice you’ve received?
Build your network and seek advice. As a leader, you need smart people around you to help you grow your business. It’s not about personally being the best, but being able to find resources and get help where needed.
How do you see leadership changing in a COVID world?
I think the pandemic has proven the importance of inclusive leadership so that everyone feels supported and valued. It’s also shown the importance of being flexible as a leader. We’ve had to remain adaptable to continue delivering high levels of customer service. This flexibility has also been important when supporting employees as everyone has had individual pressures to deal with during this time. Leaders should continue to embed this flexibility within their organisations moving forward.
They say ‘from every crisis comes opportunity’, what opportunities do you see?
The past year has been challenging, but it has also proven the importance of digital transformation in insurance. When working from home was required, it was much harder for insurers to adjust who had not embedded technology within their operating processes because they did not have data stored in the cloud and it caused communication delays with concerned customers at a time when this communication should have been a priority, which ultimately impacts the level of customer satisfaction. This demonstrates the importance of what we are trying to achieve at Tapoly in driving digitalisation in insurance and making communication between insurers and distribution partners seamless.
What advice would you give to your younger self just starting out in the industry?
Start sooner, don’t be afraid to take (calculated) risks and make sure you raise enough money to get you through the initial seed stage.