UK – British multinational beverages company Coca-Cola Europacific Partners (CCEP) has announced that it is investing £11 million (US$12.58m) in its manufacturing sites in Great Britain, as part of its commitment to net zero emissions by 2040.
The investment will enable the Coca-Cola anchor bottler to replace its 200-strong fleet of material handling equipment (MHE) – which includes some gas-powered forklift trucks – with units powered by lithium-ion batteries that produce no carbon emissions in their day-to-day operation.
The company claims the move will reduce its carbon emissions by over 1,500 tonnes per year and signifies an additional step towards its objective of reducing carbon emissions across its value chain by 30% by 2030.
CCEP is teaming up with MHE manufacturer Linde Material Handling to introduce the new fleet, “which will not only be powered solely by renewable electricity but is also more efficient and safer to operate”.
The work for the MHE fleet replacement has already begun, with the transition completed at the Morpeth factory and Milton Keynes Cold Drinks Operations.
Meanwhile, training for the introduction of another fleet of 76 MHEs started last month at CCEP’s Wakefield plant – Europe’s largest soft drinks production facility by volume.
The world’s third largest Coca-Cola bottler by volume expects the project to be completed by 2024.
CCEP’s VP and general manager, Stephen Moorhouse, said: “With the major climate conference COP26 taking place at the moment, all businesses need to go further to reduce their environmental impact and help the UK government achieve its net zero targets”.
“For Coca-Cola Europacific Partners, that means not only ensuring that we’re using more sustainable materials in the products we sell but also by making the significant reductions in emissions from our own operations that this project will help deliver.”
This is the latest of CCEP’s efforts to make its Great Britain bottling and distribution operations cleaner, greener and more efficient.
Earlier in July, Coca-Cola Europacific Partners announced the transition to 100% recycled plastic in all on-the-go bottles in Great Britain.
The transition involves all 500ml or less plastic bottles and covers the company’s entire portfolio of brands including Coca-Cola Original Taste, Coca-Cola Zero Sugar, Diet Coke, Fanta, Sprite, Dr Pepper and Lilt.
The achievement sees Coca-Cola Great Britain up the amount of recycled plastic material used in on-the-go bottles from its 50% milestone to 100%.
The shift to 100% rPET bottles follows in the footsteps of other markets including Netherlands, Norway, and Sweden.
Elsewhere in Europe, Coca-Cola Europacific Partners, made progress in its sustainability goal when it unveiled two of its manufacturing sites that have been confirmed as carbon neutral.
The certification marks a significant development in CCEP’s aim to make at least six of its sites carbon neutral by 2023 and reduce its value chain emissions by 30% by 2030.
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