Nestlé Launches a Waste Management Program to Tackle Plastic Pollution

Nestlé has partnered with local sustainability consultant TS Environment to set up a plastics waste recovery programme in Ethiopia. The objective of the programme is to achieve plastics neutrality within the next 12 months. This means Nestlé has collected and co-processed the equivalent amount of plastic as contained in the products sold and prevented the further flow of plastic into landfills.

By the end of 2020, an estimated 40 tons of plastic waste would have been collected, sorted and recycled or incinerated.

The programme will accelerate the process of collecting, recycling and sustainable disposal of plastic waste in Ethiopia.

“Plastic waste is one of the biggest sustainability issues the world is facing today. Tackling it requires a collective approach. We are committed to finding improved solutions to reduce, re-use and recycle plastic and this partnership will help us to achieve our goal,” said Wossenyeleh Shiferaw, Nestlé Horn of Africa Cluster Manager.

Shiferaw added “Leveraging on TS Environment’s technology and expertise, we will start with a pilot plastic waste recovery system targeting specific locations across Addis Ababa, with the intention of scaling this up in the near future.”

Once the plastic waste is collected, it will be sorted, weighed and thereafter the recyclable plastic will be processed to produce other plastic products, while the non-recyclable plastic waste will be incinerated to release energy via an environmentally friendly process.

Nestlé’s plastics waste management initiative will also create income generating opportunities throughout the value chain, for instance the local residents and the youth will benefit from the collection, sorting, weighing and transportation services.

“Over a short period of time since our roll-out in November, we have seen the positive impact of this initiative. Apart from the obvious environmental benefits, there is value creation for those involved, throughout the value chain, most importantly the youth. We look forward to transforming the project into a sustainable model by 2022,” said Samuel Hailu, TS Environment Technology Managing Director.

As the world’s largest food and beverage company, Nestlé is committed to taking a leadership role in tackling the plastic waste challenge. In 2018, the company made a global commitment to make 100% of its packaging, recyclable or reusable by 2025.

In pursuing this commitment, Nestlé is taking a holistic approach to address the complex and urgent issue of plastic waste. Nestlé is accelerating its initiatives across three focus areas:

  • Developing the packaging for the future, through packaging and delivery innovation and plastic reduction;
  • Helping to shape a waste-free future through increased collection and recycling; and
  • Driving new behaviours and understanding through solid waste management education.

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