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Open letter to the world’s top plastic polluters: it’s time to change
Dear Coca Cola, Néstle, PepsiCo, Mondelez International, Unilever,
On World Clean Up Day 2019, over 70,000 people went out into their communities to clean up plastic pollution and collect data on the brands they found. After analyzing the results of 484 brand audit events in over 50 countries, you have been found to be the top 5 global plastic polluters, most of you for the second year.
Once again, the efforts of thousands of people around the world have shown that your products are those found in the environment in the greatest quantities, in the most countries. Despite the urgent need for action, the focus from your companies is currently on false solutions such as shifting to other disposable materials, claiming your products are 100% recyclable, or by embracing chemical recycling, none of which will solve the crisis we currently face.
The signatories to this letter are calling on you to change how you design and deliver your products, away from your reliance on single-use plastic. We believe that as the top global plastic polluters, it is your responsibility to lead the way in redesigning packaging to be refillable and reusable. It is time to take responsibility for the harm caused by the single-use plastic you are pushing on society.
We ask that you urgently address plastic pollution by working to change your products along the following lines:
- Reveal: Publicly declare how many units of single-use plastic you produce per year per country.
- Reduce: commit to dramatically reducing the number of single-use plastic products and packaging you make and use with a clearly defined, publicly available action plan working towards measurable results.
- Reinvent: radically rethink how you deliver products to your customers so that you no longer rely on single-use plastic, with a focus on reusable and refillable packaging systems.
The signatories to this letter wish to stress that any commitments that do not meet the above criteria will not be adequate to address the plastic pollution crisis. Only a wholesale shift away from single-use packaging will change your status as the world’s top plastic polluters.