AFRICA – The Coca-Cola Company has unveiled a US$38 million fund to tackle plastic pollution in Southern, East and Central Africa over the next three years.

The initiative by the multinational beverage manufacturer is part of global efforts in managing and reducing waste under in the overall ambitions of achieving a world without waste.

According to Bruno Pietracci, president of Coca-Cola Southern and East Africa, the holistic end-to-end strategy over the next three years will focus on various interventions that will ensure a green economy.

“We have shifted our business priorities to ensure value is added to our plastic bottles so that they don’t end up as waste.

We’re investing in innovative design, collection and recycling models and partnership, to turn our bottles into valuable resources that can drive a green economy.

That is why today we are launching our three-year campaign to accelerate our world without waste vision.

Together with our bottling partners, we are investing over US$38 million to stimulate plastic recycling industries across Southern & East Africa and to educate people about what, how, and where to recycle,” Bruno Pietracci said.

The General Manager of Coca-Cola East and Central Africa Franchise, Ahmed Rady, revealed that along with its bottling partners, Coca-Cola, in 2018 formed PET Recycling Company Limited (PETCO Kenya) to drive initiatives to collect and recycle PET bottles and packaging.

The partnership also aimed at creating a favourable environment for the investment of additional capital in the PET sector in both production and recycling.

The new initiative will include expanding the group’s PET Recycling Co (PETCO) initiative beyond South Africa and Kenya, with a target of recycling 20,000 tonnes of PET bottles in 2019 as well as taking the model to Ethiopia and Uganda.

“This is part of a focused World Without Waste campaign over three years and beyond.

“We have formulated strategies to ensure that our post-consumer plastic bottles do not pollute the environment as wastes.

“We are creating value from our bottles in a bid to drive and sustain a green economy,” Rady said.

Coca-Cola will also launch a new bottle under the Bonaqua brand, using 100% recycled PET.

Globally, TCCC launched its World Without Waste project and with the primary aim of making its packaging 100% recyclable globally by 2025 and use at least 50% recycled material in its packaging by 2030.