FRANCE – Pernod Ricard has announced that it will end the use of single-use plastic point-of-sale (POS) items by 2021 as part of the French wine and spirts group’s commitment towards its “2030 Sustainability & Responsibility roadmap – Good Times from Good Place

Pernod Ricard had initially planned the ban for 2025, but following this announcement, the goal will be achieved four years ahead of the initial target. In order to drive innovation and provide guidance throughout the group, Pernod Ricard said that it has shared Global Sustainable POS Guidelines with its 90 affiliates.

The guidelines specify which materials can no longer be used and how they can be replaced. They are based on five R’s – Rethink, Reduce, Reuse, Recycle and Respect – and respond to consumers’ increasing desire for less waste and concrete actions to reduce environmental impacts from their favorite brands.

The liquor company notes that the decisive step echoes the call to action in the context of COVID-19 pandemic recently co-signed by Pernod Ricard’s Chairman & CEO, Alexandre Ricard, in the French newspaper Le Monde to “put the environment at the heart of economic recovery.”

As part of the new announcement, Alexandre Ricard added, “For the past two years we have been striving to accelerate every aspect of our business, and the current crisis must not be a threat but rather an opportunity to speed up the implementation of our Sustainability & Responsibility roadmap.

“The end of single-use plastic POS items is one of the many ways we will do our share to bring positive change to the world we live in, and achieving this goal four years ahead of schedule underlines our employees’ commitment to do so.”

Thanks to Pernod Ricard’s extensive global footprint and the strength of its distribution network, its brands are distributed by a wide variety of off-trade distributors, including in geographies with waste management challenges.

This announcement therefore represents a huge step towards the Jameson and Absolut Vodka brands owner to drastically reduce the use of single-use plastic on a global scale, reinforcing the Group’s commitment to the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s New Plastics Economy.

In early 2018 Pernod Ricard banned plastic straws and stirrers at all its events, and as part of its 2030 Sustainability & Responsibility roadmap, the Group has also committed to 100% reusable, recyclable or compostable POS items by 2030.

Pernod Ricard’s 2030 Sustainability & Responsibility roadmap has also committed to the being water balanced in all high-risk watersheds, replenishing 100% of water consumption from production sites by 2030.
By 2030, the company also aims to reduce the intensity of its carbon footprint by 50%, in line with the Science-Based Targets (SBTs) initiative.

Within the next five years, Pernod Ricard has also set goal to develop regenerative agriculture pilot schemes within its owned vineyards in 8 wine regions to mimic natural processes to improve the quality of topsoil, watersheds and ecosystems.

The Group intends to then partner with over 5,000 farmers to further share this knowledge by 2030. The company has also pledged to defining a strategic project to address the most pressing local biodiversity issues in 100% of the Group’s global affiliates by 2030.