Unwrapping Coca-Cola’s strategy in delivering sustainability in GB

Machinery Update has spoken to vice president supply chain at Coca-Cola European Partners in GB Steve Adams and here, he explains the soft drink giant’s sustainable packaging strategy.

Through our sustainability action plan, This is Forward, Coca-Cola European Partners has set out an ambition to work with others to ensure that all our packaging is recovered so that more is recycled and none of it ends up as litter or as waste in the oceans. We have long championed the need for reform of the current recovery system and have pioneered the concept of sustainable packaging – including lightweighting, recyclability, the use of recycled and renewable materials and smart new ways to reduce packaging waste.

As a big business, we are clearly able to leverage our scale for good and this year we are investing to increase capacity, boost productivity and improve further our overall environmental performance.

When it comes to sustainability, our machinery suppliers play a critical role in delivering on our ambitions and we really do want them to share our passion for continuous action in three key areas: reducing our carbon emissions, boosting water efficiency and meeting our sustainable packaging agenda. At the same time, we are looking for new ways to increase automation on our sites; we want equipment that gives us more flexibility and agility; and we are developing new capabilities to support our efforts to broaden our portfolio to meet the changing needs of our consumers.

So, we do expect a lot from our suppliers. But we partner with plenty of businesses that can rise to these challenges.

  • The full interview is included in the September/October issue of Machinery Update as part of a major feature on sustainability. Also included in this feature is a piece from Incpen; a look at the latest developments in PET bottles; what tray manufacturers are working on in light of the plastics debate; an article on food waste and a general round up of the latest initiatives from PPMA members. The magazine is published on 16 September.