Aston Manor Cider, one of the UK’s leading cider makers and contract packing providers, will switch to 51% recycled content in all large pack (PET) plastic bottles over the next few months.
The business estimates that this move, a first for the alcoholic drinks industry, will save approximately 1,000 tonnes of raw material annually, which will mean 25 million fewer plastic bottles made from the original material.
The recycled material will be used across Aston Manor Cider’s award-winning portfolio of products that can be found in major multiples and independent convenience stores. This industry first move will also include all own-label ciders produced.
Aston Manor Cider’s commitment to reducing its environmental impact goes above and beyond the government’s present ambition on plastic packaging. The Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs is currently consulting on a proposed tax that would apply to plastic packaging with less than 30% recycled content.
Speaking about becoming the first alcohol business to introduce 51% rPET, Jamie Weall, head of compliance and sustainability at Aston Manor Cider, said: “We are proud to be driving sustainability in the alcohol industry by becoming the first business to deliver 51% recycled material into our packaging.
“This is a clear priority for Aston Manor Cider and supports our wider investment in sustainability. We recognise that consumers, customers and the government want to see action on this and we are proud to be the first to step up. Our commitment to deliver this is sincere and backed by industry leading innovation to make it a reality.
“Not only is this a significant step for Aston Manor Cider, but the mainstream cider industry too, as we produce numerous brands and own label cider this will reach millions of consumers.”
The move is part of Aston Manor Cider’s established sustainability plan. They are the first, and so far, only alcohol producer to sign up for the UK Plastics Pact, the collaborative initiative that will create a circular economy for plastic packaging. As a founding member of the scheme, Aston Manor Cider has already delivered on one of its fundamental pledges to ensure that 100% of its plastic packaging will be reusable, recyclable or compostable.
Aston Manor Cider is also a member of the On-Pack Recycling Label scheme. This delivers a simple, consistent and UK-wide recycling message on every brand or own-label product packaged across their sites in the West Midlands and Devon.
The 51% rPET bottles will be filled at Aston Manor Cider’s facilities in Aston, Birmingham and Tiverton, Devon. Both sites are AA+ accredited by the BRC Global Standard for drinks producers, one of very few drinks manufacturers to secure the highest rating available.
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