Following a recent €2 million investment into its Newcastle West operations, the Britvic-owned Ballygowan Mineral Water brand is moving to 100% recycled plastic bottles.
The move is part of Britvic's sustainability strategy – Healthier People, Healthier Planet – which also outlines plans for other brands in the group's portfolio, including Robinsons, Fruit Shoot, and Tango, to switch to 100% rPET by the end of 2022.
Recyclable Plastic Bottles
The switch will see the removal of 51 million virgin PET bottles from the economy, or the equivalent of 1,288 tonnes of plastic.
The new 100% rPET bottles must be recycled correctly by consumers in order for them to be reused, the company added.
The switch to recyclable plastic bottles will play a key role in establishing a circular economy and have a positive impact on the planet.
Ballygowan plans to remove an additional 245 tonnes of plastics from its operations through a packaging redesign.
Commenting on the move, Kevin Donnelly, managing director of Britvic Ireland, said, "By its nature, Ballygowan has always been attuned to the importance of our environment.
"The purity of our water depends on a natural filtration that is embedded in the earth. By investing in a fully recycled bottling system, we are taking a major step to reduce our impact on the planet. This is the latest innovation in a journey which has already seen a reduction of over 90% in our manufacturing emissions for Ballygowan."
Ballygowan is the latest Britvic brand to switch to recyclable plastic, following Fruit Shoot Hydro's move to rPET bottles in September 2020.
In 2019, Britvic provided a £5 million investment support package to Esterform Packaging Ltd to build an rPET manufacturing facility in the UK.
The group believes that the ongoing supply of rPET will be crucial to achieving its sustainability goals.
Sian Young, head of people and planet for Britvic Ireland, said, "At Britvic, we are on the path to a more sustainable future and are excited to take this next step on the journey with our consumers by offering 100% recycled Ballygowan bottles and asking they recycle them after use.
"A small change that delivers big impact while also enjoying what I believe is one of Ireland's best natural assets - locally sourced natural mineral water."