SWITZERLAND – Coca-Cola HBC Switzerland, a subsidiary of Coca-Cola Hellenic Bottling Company plans to use carbon dioxide filtered from the air in its sparkling drinks, starting with its own mineral water brand, Valser.
Through a partnership with Swiss Direct Air Capture firm Climeworks, the company will use carbon dioxide extracted from air for carbonation of its beverages.
Coca-Cola HBC will utilize Climework’s clean, air-filtered CO2 that uses either waste heat or renewable energy as an energy source.
Jan Wurzbacher, co-founder and CEO of Climeworks said: “By entering the beverage market with Coca‑Cola HBC Switzerland, we are continuing our path of commercializing our Direct Air Capture (DAC) technology, which began with the world’s first commercial plant in May 2017.”
Driving the sustainability agenda
According to the company, the partnership will allow it to get carbon dioxide from a sustainable source, making it the first beverage company in the world to drive the development of the technology.
Climeworks is a spin-off from the Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich and will enable Coca-Cola obtain the CO2 necessary for sparkling drinks from a sustainable source and also be able to recycle CO2 from the air.
“We are proud to be the very first beverage company worldwide to drive the expansion of this ground-breaking technology.
Sustainability is built into our strategic business priorities,” said Nigel Davis, General Manager of Coca‑Cola HBC Switzerland.
“To do so by supporting a local Swiss business is even more rewarding.”
The beverage industry is one of the world’s largest users of CO2 feedstocks, using 10 million tonnes of CO2 per year.
Environment issues around CO2 emissions among other factors saw Coca-Cola European Partners pause UK production amid CO2 shortages.
With a plant in Zurich, where the CO2 captured from the air is sold for use as fertilizer to a neighbouring greenhouse, Climeworks also has a plant in Iceland, where CO2 is bound to water and pumped underground to form solid minerals within two years.
The startup aims to filter 1% of global emissions out of the air by 2020.