Budweiser Brewing Group UK&I is joining a growing number of brewers who are abandoning plastic beer rings in favor of more sustainable alternatives.
Here’s the deal…
The UK arm of AB InBev, home to Stella Artois, Budweiser and Bud Light, has announced plans to scrap plastic rings in favor of recyclable paperboard for all its brands…a move which the company estimates would save around 850 tons of plastic waste each year.
The company said that the £6.3 million investment in new technology, which would allow it to eliminate plastic rings from can packaging by the end of 2020, includes the Stella Artois pint can four-pack, which is the nation’s biggest selling small pack format.
Paula Lindenberg, the President of Budweiser Brewing Group UK&I championed the company’s forthcoming changes…
“We are proud of the work we have already done so far, but more needed to be done to address the issue of single use plastics. This announcement ensures that the UK’s favorite beers will soon come in recyclable paperboard packaging.”
“This is another important step towards a more sustainable future, as we move towards brewing our biggest beer brands with 100% locally-sourced barley and 100% renewable electricity from solar power.”
The movement away from plastic beer ring packaging has been gaining momentum around the world.
In 2017, Mexican startup E6PR (Eco Six Pack Ring) introduced ec0-friendly biodegradable and compostable beer packaging that safely breaks down outside or in the water.
In 2018, Carlsberg announced that it would be replacing traditional plastic 6-pack rings, with tiny dots of glue binding the cans together that won’t trash the world’s oceans or entangle its sea life.
Already on retail shelves in the UK, Carlsberg’s “Snap Pack” hopes to reduce the amount of plastic used in traditional multi-packs by up to 76%, and the company’s overall global plastic usage by more than 1,200 tons.
Last April, Guinness, which is owned by Diageo, announced that it was replacing the plastic rings with cardboard packs which are sustainably sourced, recyclable and fully biodegradable. This transition from plastic to cardboard also included other company-owned beer brands such as Harp and Smithwick’s.
The new packaging, which Diageo projects will cut its plastic waste by 400 tons per year, is the equivalent of removing 40 million plastic bottles from the world which, if laid out in a row, would reach from London to Beijing.
And in June Corona introduced fit packs, an award-winning interlocking beer can alternative to plastic 6-pack rings.