Tanzania Breweries Limited eliminates use of PET packaging in production lines, shifts to aluminium cans

TANZANIA – Tanzania Breweries Limited (TBL), a subsidiary of AB InBev, has completely eliminated the use of polyethylene terephthalate plastic (PET) bottles in packaging of its non-alcoholic malt beverage Grand Malt, to exclusively use aluminium cans.

The new packaging is in line with the company’s shift from the use of polyethylene terephthalate plastic (PET) bottles in its production lines, keeping with its commitment to promoting sustainable and circular packaging.

This change also takes the parent company one step closer to achieving its 2025 Sustainability Goal of having 100% of its products packaging being returnable or made from majority recycled content.

It is also aligned with the national Five-year Development Plan (FYDP III) goal of environmental sustainability and the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

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“We are constantly seeking solutions to increase the recycled materials in our packaging in a way that makes sense from a business as well as a sustainability point of view.”

AB InBev’s Procurement Director for the East Africa Business Unit – Jacques Els

Although PET is recyclable, the proportion of recycled content in a finished product is typically lower than other materials such as glass or stainless steel.

PET also contributes to higher carbon emissions than other materials throughout its lifecycle, notes Daily News Tanzania.

The use of the highly sustainable, light-weight, stainless-steel and recyclable can, will enable the brewer to prevent 166 tonnes of virgin plastic and 10 tonnes of high-density polyethylene (HDPE) from reaching the landfills.

“We are constantly seeking solutions to increase the recycled materials in our packaging in a way that makes sense from a business as well as a sustainability point of view.

“Our motivation goes beyond just the environmental impacts – circular packaging enables us to contribute to building economic security and resilience through the creation and support of networks of local businesses that improve livelihoods,” AB InBev’s Procurement Director for the East Africa Business Unit, Jacques Els said.

AB InBev’s packaging sustainability journey was accelerated in 2012 with a commitment to remove 100,000 metric tons of packaging material globally.

The company was able to exceed this goal in 2016, removing 146,000 metric tons of material from its packaging.

Further to that, the global beer maker has worked diligently in all its breweries around the world to achieve an average 98% recycling rate.

Its next challenge is to make sure all its products are in packaging that is returnable or made from majority recycled content. AB InBev has started with a 46% baseline.

To get there faster, the maker of Budweiser beer is working with multiple partners, including the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, the Closed Loop Fund, and the Glass Recycling Coalition, as well as industry peers, its consumers, vertical operations, local governments, and suppliers.

In Tanzania, plastic pollution is rampant causing public health risks and environmental degradation.

During the World Environment Day, a group of soft beverage manufacturers and plastic bottle recyclers in the country, joined hands by engaging in a clean-up exercise.

The initiative which entailed beach clean-up and plastic waste management awareness at Coco-Beach in Dar es Salaam, was facilitated by Petco Tanzania, and saw the participation of Coca-Cola Kwanza, Pepsi Tanzania, SilaAfrica Ltd, A-One, Sayona, Nyanza Bottlers and Bonite Bottlers.

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