At Purina, we believe that no packaging should end up as waste and we are committed that by 2025, 100% of our packaging will be reusable or recyclable. It is something we are working hard to achieve.
Plastic packaging plays an important role in safely delivering pet food to consumers and reducing food loss and waste. It offers a unique combination of benefits, including preserving food freshness, it's lightweight and handy for consumers. Therefore, while we keep working on reducing plastics used in our packaging, we need to carefully consider the alternatives before making any changes. We believe that with the right approach, collection and recycling of it is possible without causing a detrimental effect on the environment.
To date, we have made considerable progress in ensuring the use of only a minimum amount of packaging to pack our products safely. In 2016, as part of our Purina in Society Commitments, we set a target to avoid the use of 3,000 tonnes of packaging material by 2019 compared to 2015 levels. In 2018, we avoided 787 tonnes of packaging, and in total, since 2015 we have avoided 3,542 tonnes of packaging, meaning we have over-delivered on this target by 18%. 52% of the avoided packaging material since 2017 was plastic.
A good example of our initiatives to decrease the use of plastic is the reduction of the weight of some of our packaging by downgauging the PE (polyethylene) layer. This packaging change has already been implemented across our European factories and achieved a positive impact on our overall packaging reduction, allowing us to reduce 528.3 tonnes of packaging in total.
Our efforts to reduce the use of plastics in our packaging don’t stop there. We are working on eliminating or changing complex combinations of packaging materials, so that all our packaging, including plastics, is recyclable. We are also working on incorporating, where possible, recycled plastics in our packaging and investing in research to find sustainable materials that protect pet food in the same manner as plastics.
We are also collaborating with different stakeholders to develop new approaches to increase recycling, as we know that the commitment to 100% recyclable or reusable packaging alone is not enough to tackle the plastics issue.
Discover Purina’s commitment towards improving the environment performance of our packaging.