Johnnie Walker set to sell its whisky in fully recyclable paper bottles

Caroline Allen
Contributor
The change will come into effect in 2021. (Johnnie Walker)

Johnnie Walker whisky will become the first drink’s brand in the world to launch a 100% plastic free paper-based spirits bottle.

The new launch, which will come into effect from 2021, has been heralded as a great step in the right direction, particularly because the toll the food and drink industry is taking on the environment.

The brand behind the design, Diageo, worked in partnership with Pilot Lite, to launch Pulpex Limited, a new sustainable packaging company.

Although Johnnie Walker is the first to benefit from this new, environmentally-friendly packaging, we’re expecting to see more brands taking advantage over the next year.

It's the first of many drinks brands. (Johnnie Walker)

The likes of Unilever and PepsiCo are also on board with new packaging technology company, meaning that positive waves in sustainability should hopefully begin to ripple through the food and drinks industry.

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The bottle is made out of entirely sustainably-sourced pulp to meet food-safe standards and will be fully recyclable in standard waste streams.

The technology is going to open doors to a lot of other drinks companies, who up until now have only had glass bottle options for their packaging.

The reason that using glass bottles isn’t as environmentally-friendly as this new equivalent is because glass requires the burning of fossil fuels in order for it to be made. This produces greenhouse gases, sulfur oxides and nitrogen oxides.

The packaging has been designed to contain a variety of liquid products and will form part of Diageo’s commitment towards Goal 12 of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals: Responsible Consumption and Production, Diageo announced in a statement.

“We are constantly striving to push the boundaries within sustainable packaging and this bottle has the potential to be truly ground-breaking,” Ewan Andrew, the chief sustainability officer of Diageo PLC, said.

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Brands have been looking at ways to reduce their carbon footprint over the last few years, with Lidl launching packaging from plastic collected from beaches.

Brands seem to be focussing their efforts away from drinks and more towards food packaging, so this launch is a refreshing step in the right direction for drinks brands.

Coca-Cola, Nestlé, and PepsiCo are leading the way - for the wrong reasons - when it comes to pollution, with the three brands creating the most plastic pollution in the industry.

Break Free From Plastic announced this as part of its plastic-free report in 2019 and it seems that PepsiCo has picked up on it and is looking to make some changes to their carbon footprint.

Watch this space.