Mondelēz International has announced that it has committed to reducing its virgin plastic use in order to combat plastic pollution.
Mondelēz will be decreasing its use of virgin plastics in its packaging as part of ongoing efforts to eliminate, reduce, replace and recycle plastic packaging across its portfolio.
The company has also stated that it supported the introduction of a US Federal recycling scheme that takes into account the different types of plastic packaging used across the industry.
Mondelēz also revealed that although it has a “significantly below-sector-average” use of plastics in its portfolio by weight, it will continue to reduce plastic packaging. By 2025, the company aims for an at least 25% reduction in virgin plastic use in its rigid plastic packaging or a 5% reduction in virgin plastic use in its overall plastic packaging portfolio, assuming constant portfolio mix.
This will be achieved through a range of measures including the elimination of plastic material, increased use of recycled content and the adoption of reuse models for the company’s portfolio.
Dirk Van de Put, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, commented: “Our support for a more sustainable future for plastics is clear. We’re already one of the most efficient users of plastic packaging in the consumer goods space and we’ve made significant strides to reduce plastic packaging use, substitute plastics for other materials and design for recyclability.”
“Given the strong progress we’ve made in packaging, and our focus on leading a sustainable future for snacking, we’re committing to reductions in virgin plastics use and investments in innovation to remove packaging or switch to more easily recyclable materials.”
These commitments build on the company’s existing 2025 goals to use 5% recycled content by weight across its plastic packaging and to design all packaging for recyclability, a goal the company is on track to achieve with 94% of packaging already designed to be recycled.
The company currently invests over $30 million a year in technology, resources and recycling infrastructure and anticipates an acceleration in this investment over time. In total, between 2019 and 2025, Mondelēz International anticipates spending approximately $300 million in creating a sustainable future for plastics.
Mondelēz also outlined how it is supporting the nationwide recycling scheme in the US by using lightweight plastic packaging to protect food, which reduces its plastic packaging footprint by weight. It also brings environmental benefits like helping reduce transportation emissions and prolonging shelf-life.
The company went on to say that “while packaging can be increasingly designed for recyclability”, recycling infrastructure improvements, such as those proposed under Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) schemes, are needed globally, particularly for flexible films. The company is lending its support for a reasonable, Federal EPR scheme in the United States that caters to flexible films, as well as other plastics.