Reducing the impact of packaging on the environment

Country: United Kingdom

Impact Area

  • Nutrition
  • Water
  • Rural Development
  • Environmental sustainability
  • Compliance
  • Community engagement
Sep 26, 2012, updated September 2012

Background

Reducing the impact of packaging on the environment
REDUCING ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT:Easter eggs made by Nestlé UK contain less packaging

As part of its drive to reduce the impact of packaging on the environment, Nestlé supports an integrated approach with investment in innovative materials, source reduction, reuse, energy recovery and recycling. Wherever possible we use recyclable packaging materials and, in the example of Easter eggs packaging in the UK, we have used the entire back of the pack to communicate this to our consumers.

For Easter 2009, Nestlé UK was the country’s first major confectionery company to replace non-recyclable plastic with recyclable cardboard packaging in most of the 25 million Easter eggs it makes. Nestlé UK also managed to use 30% less packaging overall, saving a huge 700 tonnes of packaging materials.

Programme description

The old non-recyclable plastic inserts in small and medium-sized eggs have been replaced with a recyclable card basket to secure the egg. The packs also include an easy-to-follow guide to help families recycle them. The box might look smaller, but importantly for chocolate lovers, the amount of chocolate remains exactly the same!

Jo Swinson, Liberal Democrat MP and packaging campaigner commented: “The steps taken by Nestlé to reduce packaging in its 2009 Easter egg range show that the company has listened to the campaigners and consumers who are fed up with wasteful excessive packaging.

This is a step in the right direction, but it is up to all manufacturers to continue finding ways to cut out excess packaging and improve its recyclability. To have a real impact, this packaging reduction must be part of a broader trend rather than a one-off change.

Value to Society

Liz Goodwin, CEO of WRAP, added: "The work Nestlé is doing to reduce Easter egg packaging will cut consumer waste by 700 tonnes this year. This will make a significant difference to the amount of rubbish going to landfill this Easter and it is good to see Nestlé making significant reductions to packaging while maintaining the product’s integrity and consumer appeal.

This work is part of concerted efforts by industry to reduce Easter egg packaging which is something that consumers want.”


Value to Nestlé

Next Steps

UN Millenium Development Goal

  • 1 Eradicate extreme poverty and hunger
  • 2 Achieve universal primary education
  • 3 Promote gender equality and empower women
  • 4 Reduce child mortality
  • 5 Improve maternal health
  • 6 Combat HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases
  • 7 Ensure environmental sustainability
  • 8 Develop global partnerships