Report Hits Big Processors on Discarded Packaging

Dec. 16, 2020
An environmental advocacy group has called out Coca-Cola, PepsiCo and Nestlé, for the third year in a row, as the worst packaging polluters in the world.

An environmental advocacy group has called out Coca-Cola, PepsiCo and Nestlé, for the third year in a row, as the worst packaging polluters in the world.

Break Free From Plastic, which describes itself as “a global movement envisioning a future free from plastic pollution,” issues an annual global audit of solid waste. More than 14,000 volunteers in 55 countries conducted “brand audits” – examinations of streets, beaches, parks or other areas where trash tends to accumulate.

For the third year in a row, Coca-Cola, PepsiCo and Nestlé supplied the plastic packaging most frequently found in the trash. Coca-Cola led in 51 of the 55 nations in the survey, with a total of 13,834 pieces of plastic. Nestlé was second with 8,633, and PepsiCo came in third with 5,155.

The problem was exacerbated by a surge in single-serve packaging, which has increased in popularity during the pandemic.

"The world's top polluting corporations claim to be working hard to solve plastic pollution, but instead they are continuing to pump out harmful single-use plastic packaging," Emma Priestland, Break Free From Plastic's global campaign coordinator, told The Guardian.

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