We are working to take the “single” out of “single-use” plastic bottles by helping to realize a circular economy – one in which bottles never end up in a landfill or ocean.
Part of our responsibility as a major producer of packaged goods is not only to talk about creating an end market for recycled plastic, but also to demonstrate our commitment by using it in our products. The Ellen MacArthur Foundation 2016 report, The New Plastics Economy: Rethinking the future of plastics, found that most plastic packaging is used only once, and that 95% of the value of plastic packaging material, worth $80-120 billion annually, is lost to the economy.
In 2018, we announced a goal to use 25% recycled polyethylene terephthalate plastic, or rPET, across our U.S. domestic portfolio by 2021 and 50% rPET by 2025, and we have steadily made progress toward our recycled plastic commitments. Additionally, Poland Spring® 100% Natural Spring Water made an industry-leading announcement that it plans to be the first major bottled water brand to reach 100% recycled plastic across its still water portfolio by 2022.
Our Achievements to Date
In December 2020, we reached 20% rPET use across our U.S. portfolio. In July, we announced that three of our regional spring water brands have started to offer bottles made of 100% recycled plastic, joining Poland Spring® 100% Natural Spring Water in offering bottles made with 100% rPET. All individual-sized bottles of Arrowhead® Brand Mountain Spring Water and Nestlé® Pure Life® Purified Water produced in California have been made with 50% recycled plastic since 2017. Now, five of our six regional spring water brands offer bottles made with recycled plastic, and four of these offer bottles made with 100% rPET. We are also proud that we have three of the only major, nationally distributed bottled water offerings on the market made using 100% rPET – Nestlé® Pure Life® 700mL, Poland Spring® ORIGIN, Nestlé® Pure Life® “DC Collection.”
By using recycled plastic, we are breathing new life into existing materials, reducing the need for new plastic and generating a 67% smaller carbon footprint compared to using new plastic.1
1 The Association of Plastic Recyclers (2018)