Packaging Happenings: Nestle paper packaging, Singapore container return scheme, Suntory packaging goals and more feature in our round-up
Paper power: Nestle moves plastic reduction ambitions one step closer to APAC region with Australia pilot
Nestle has moved one step closer towards its ambitions to reduce plastic packaging in the APAC region with its latest announcement of a paper packaging trial for chocolate in Australia, though its suitability for Asia’s hot and humid climate still remains to be seen.
Food and beverage giant Nestle has long been vocal of its ambitions to tackle plastic packaging usage and reduce the use of this in the name of sustainability. But the majority of such innovations, including those coming out of its international packaging science institute, have been targeted mainly at markets with colder climates e.g. Europe and the United States.
A major limiting factor for the firm to bring similar new innovations into the Asia Pacific region is the tropical hot and humid climate here.
Return to recycle: Singapore beverage firms supportive of government plans for beverage container return scheme
Beverage firms in Singapore have highlighted support for the local government’s proposed plans to implement a container return scheme in 2024, with supermarkets, convenience stores and residential common areas most likely to be the locations of collection.
The beverage container return scheme was first announced in government back in 2020, and discussion was more recently revived when the National Environment Agency (NEA) conducted a public consultation on the matter in late 2022.
Although the final results of the consultation are still pending release, Singapore Senior Minister of State for Sustainability and the Environment Amy Khor has highlighted the strong potential benefits such a scheme can bring to the local industry, saying that the incentive to make this scheme work in a cost-effective manner is strong because it would be owned and run by the industry.
“This will be a step forward in the way Singapore manages our packaging waste,” she said via a formal statement.
Purging plastic pains: Suntory APAC on why alternative materials and recycling efforts needed in unison
Beverage giant Suntory believes that a simultaneous focus on the development of alternative packaging materials as well as better recycling infrastructure are essential to deliver on its sustainability ambitions.
Sustainability has emerged as an increasingly important trend within the food and beverage industry in APAC over the last few years, especially after the COVID-19 pandemic hit.
This has driven many firms in the sector to set lofty sustainability goals, but within the region a great deal of focus has remained on the establishment of bottle or packaging recovery schemes and recycling, as opposed to the reduction and replacement of plastic.
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‘No more wasteful gimmicks’: China issues strict constraints for fruit, meat, egg and seafood packaging
The Chinese government has launched strict draft standards to govern excessive food packaging in the country covering fruit, meat, egg and seafood products, allowing public comments on these until January 2023.
China’s quest to eliminate the use of excessive packaging in the country to cut down on packaging waste has been ongoing since 2021 when the government first banned these for festive foods such as mooncakes and dumplings, and earlier this year expanded its focus to include several more food categories such as fresh foods and foods purchase via e-commerce.