Tetra Pak South Africa has launched the Go Nature Go Carton campaign to highlight that growing populations need access to food packaging that keeps the contents safe, nutritious, and available. Yet packaging can cause problems for the planet.
By 2050 the world’s population is predicted to reach 9,1 billion, which will require an increase of 70% food availability. With 33% of food lost or wasted each year, high-performance packaging plays a critical role in today’s global food delivery system.
“The world needs a package that maximises the use of materials with a reduced impact on nature,” says Stefan Fageräng, MD of Tetra Pak Southern Africa. “We believe that fibre-based carton packages are a more sustainable option currently on the market today. Even so, they contain thin layers of plastic and aluminium, in order to secure food safety. Which is where we see the potential to do better.”
This means developing a carton that can represent the ultimate solution for nature and climate, responding to challenges such as:
Using only renewable or recycled materials, not draining our planet of limited resources;
Supporting carbon-neutral production and distribution;
Ensuring a resilient food system that expands food access and secures food safety while reducing food waste;
Helping support full recycling to keep materials in use; and
Focusing on the use of materials with a reduced impact on nature.
“Tetra Pak has a long and proven history of pioneering innovations. Our transformative approach to packaging changed the world once – keeping food safe for everybody and ensuring food waste was minimised,” says Fageräng. “With Go Nature Go Carton, we are accelerating our evolution to create the world’s most sustainable food package. We know that what we do works for people, but we need to create a carton that works even better for the planet.”
Tetra Pak’s journey to develop the world’s most sustainable food package includes:
Maximising the use of materials that reduce the impact on nature – increasing the paper-based and plant-based content in our packages, and sourcing these raw materials in a way that protects biodiversity and natural environments;
Securing carbon-neutral production and distribution. Tetra Pak will reach net zero greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and 100% renewable energy by 2030, striving to achieve net zero for the value chain by 2050.
Continuing to unwaveringly protect food and ensure food safety and availability for a growing number of people around the world while preventing food waste with farm-to-table processing technologies.
Developing a fully recyclable package with a supporting collection, sorting and recycling infrastructure everywhere, to keep materials in use for as long as possible; and
Reducing the amount of plastic and aluminium, while increasing the paper-based content in packages, since waste management systems across the world are far from optimal and not all materials can be infinitely recycled.
It is not enough to have a circular packaging model that is blind to energy intensity, carbon emissions and end of life impact. We need a holistic environmental approach that subsumes a radical decarbonisation of materials, to reduce the impact on our planet – today and tomorrow.
NOTE TO EDITOR:
In South Africa Tetra Pak focuses on recycling used beverage cartons through local partners. In 2019, 4906 tonnes of used beverage carton were recovered. Mpact Recycling (the collection arm of the Mpact Group) recycles these at the Mpact Paper mill in Springs; and the Gayatri Paper Mill also has the facilities to recycle carton packs in Gauteng after they are collected countrywide.
Our recycling partners create numerous products from the recycled materials, including reel cores for new flatpack carton shipped in reels prior to filling. Other products include cereal boxes, corrugated boxes, pallets, and roof tiles.
Tetra Pak Southern Africa continues to improve sustainability in our own operations. The converting factory in Pinetown currently uses renewable credits but will soon use its own 100% solar power. The Johannesburg and Cape Town offices are currently transitioning to 100% renewable solar energy in phases.
Our Tetra Pak Southern Africa 2019 sponsored schools education programme was done in partnership with RecyclePaperZA, formerly the Paper Recycling Association of South Africa (PRASA). It reached learners and teachers at schools in four provinces. We reached more than 20 000 learners, more than 600 teachers and 17 schools in the Gert Sibande Municipality. In Ekhuruleni our programme contacted 6 450 learners and 372 teachers at eight schools. In Nelson Mandela Bay we reached more than 7 000 learners and 76 teachers at 14 schools. In Ethekwini our programme reached out to 3 980 learners and 185 teachers at 14 schools.
Last year we supported five buy-back centres with visible recycling branding, sponsored recycling bags for the Clean-Up and recycle campaigns, which reached 16 795 volunteers, and sponsored the branding for 2 500 community collection points for the collection of liquid carton and paper packaging.
Consumers are encouraged to visit recycleyourcartons.co.za to learn more about recycling and find drop-off points in South Africa.
ABOUT TETRA PAK
Tetra Pak is a world leading food processing and packaging solutions company. Working closely with our customers and suppliers, we provide safe, innovative, and environmentally sound products that each day meet the needs of hundreds of millions of people in more than 160 countries. With more than 25,000 employees around the world, we believe in responsible industry leadership and a sustainable approach to business.
Our promise, “PROTECTS WHAT’S GOOD™,” reflects our vision to commit to making food safe and available, everywhere.
More information about Tetra Pak is available at http://www.tetrapak.com
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