Conditioned by pressure from environmental organizations such as Greenpeace, the giants of the soft drink industry Coca-Cola and PepsiCo have announced in the US that they will cease to belong to the Association of the Plastic Industry.
“These companies have understood that they cannot speak publicly of their intention to reduce their environmental impact, at the same time that they financially support associations like this one, which press for them to continue having a complete dependence on disposable plastics ", says Julio Barea, head of the plastics campaign at Greenpeace Spain.
"It is still a very insufficient step but in the right direction, and a small victory for each person who has signed and demanded that Coca-Cola and PepsiCo eliminate their # MalditoPlástico."
Coca Cola and PepsiCo are among the four brands that sell the most single-use plastics, as Greenpeace denounces in its report "The comfort crisis. The corporations behind the tide of plastic pollution”.
Although this is good news, it is not enough to solve the serious problem of plastics. Some of the alternatives proposed by these companies, such as that part of the plastic to make new bottles will come from recycled material, does not represent a solution to use and throw away.
PepsiCo, for example, plans to manufacture its bottles with 50% recycled plastic (rPET) in the European Union from 2030 - it currently uses 13% - with the goal of progressively reaching 45% by 2025.
25% of the plastic that Coca Cola uses to make its bottles comes from recycled material and, in Spain, for example, this plastic has to be imported from other places such as Germany, because there is not enough material available, given the shortcomings and shortages in environmental recycling policies.
Germany has a packaging return and return system (SDDR). There, the SDDR promotes the reuse and purchase of reusable packaging, which is a real and effective solution to disposable plastics.
"Local communities should have the right to protect and preserve their environment without corporate interference"Barea adds. "It's time for companies that claim to care about reducing plastic pollution, take real steps forward, phase out their single-use plastics, and join the reusable revolution.
Greenpeace is working to get companies to eliminate and reduce the single-use plastics they use.
But while PepsiCo and Coca-Cola have indicated a desire to reduce their plastic footprint, neither has come up with a comprehensive reduction strategy to this day.