Walkers have launched an initiative to encourage recycling of their packets, with parent company Pepisco claiming, “We really want to do something about the environmental impact of our packaging.”
The initiative encourages consumers to send their crisp packets to TerraCycle, a recycling business who can then turn the waste into pellets, which can be used to build park benches and bags, among other things.
The move comes after a petition was launched against Walkers by environmental campaign group 38 Degrees. Over 333,000 people signed the petition, and a social media campaign titled #PacketInWalkers encouraged consumers to post their empty crisp packets back to Walkers. In September, Royal Mail pleaded with protesters to at least send their packets in envelopes, after a flurry of crisp packets were posted with nothing more than Walkers’ freepost address sellotaped to them.
Walkers aims to switch to recyclable packaging by 2025, but many environmental campaigners claim this isn’t soon enough. The long time frame is in part down to Pepisco’s report that 28 billion more crisp packets will be produced by then, but in the meantime, Walkers remain committed to a number of other environmental commitments. The snack manufacturer have reduced transport pollution by travelling four million miles fewer since 2010, and have committed to finding alternative energy sources. This year they joined the UK Plastics Pact, an initiative to keep plastic in the economy and out of the environment.
Walkers are by no means the only company to be fighting back against plastic waste in 2018. Earlier this year Asda pledged to replace all single-use cups and cutlery by 2019, McDonalds promised to make 100% of their packaging from renewable and recyclable material in the next eight years, and Evian, like Walkers, named 2025 their target to produce 100% recyclable packaging.
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