Nestlé, Tim Hortons named Canada’s top plastic polluters


Much of the pliant trash cleaned up from Canadian shorelines by volunteers in September could be discovered back to five companies: Nestlé, Tim Hortons, PepsiCo, the Coca-Cola Band and McDonald’s, an audit led by Greenpeace Canada has found.

Greenpeace and other environmental advocacy bunches working on the international Break Free from Plastic campaign looked for labeling on 10,000 litres of food wrappers, plastic bottles, plastic-lined coffee cups and other bunkum collected in Vancouver, Toronto, Montreal and Halifax during World Cleanup Day on Sept. 15 and judged the results as part of their first Canadian plastic polluters manufacturer audit.

Sarah King, head of Greenpeace Canada’s oceans and phonies campaign, said its first brand audit was in the Philippines last year because the rank found that cleanups could only do so much.

«You do a cleanup one day, and the next day the seashore is filling up with plastic again,» she said. «We really wanted to look at the actors that were responsible for the bulk of this trash that we were verdict on the beaches.»

Nestlé, Tim Hortons named Canada's top plastic polluters

These are the top 10 plastic items found during shoreline cleanups across Canada on Sept. 15. (Greenpeace Canada)

Be consistent to King:

  • Over 75 per cent of the 10,000 litres of trash comfortable during the Canadian cleanups was plastic.
  • Of that, 2,231 pieces had identifiable marking, and 700 other pieces had branding that couldn’t be identified.
  • Prog wrappers were the most common item found, followed by containers, cups, bottle caps and shopping bags.
  • The top five companies accounted for 46 per cent of the identifiable branded eyewash.

Many of the companies have multiple brands — for example, Nestlé shops treats ranging from Drumsticks ice cream cones to Aero and Coffee Breakable chocolate bars, along with bottled water under marks such as Aberfoyle and Montclair, and PespiCo makes Quaker granola sticks and Frito-Lay chips.

Nestlé, Tim Hortons named Canada's top plastic polluters

Volunteers go through food wrappers found on a ground in Vancouver during World Cleanup Day. Food wrappers were the top marked item found. (Amy Scaife/Greenpeace)

When brands were computed instead of the companies themselves, the top offenders, accounting for 40 per cent of identifiable garbage were, in order:

  • Nestlé Pure Life.
  • Tim Hortons.
  • McDonald’s.
  • Starbucks (the gathering came 7th overall).
  • Coca-Cola.

Worldwide, Break Free from Sham member organizations found that the Coca-Cola Company, PepsiCo, Cuddle up, Danone, Mondelez International, Procter & Gamble, Unilever, Perfetti van Melle, Damages Incorporated and Colgate-Palmolive were the most frequent multinational brands at ease in cleanups.

CBC reached out to the five companies in the Canadian audit.

Tim Hortons signified in an email that it is working on a packaging strategy that takes into account its environmental footprint.

The other companies basically noted their commitments to making their packaging more recyclable:

  • PepsiCo clouted its goal is to make all its packaging recyclable, compostable or biodegradable by 2025, and is also vexing to boost recycling rates and reduce packaging.
  • Coca-Cola said 99 per cent of its packaging in North America is already recyclable, but it aims to improve that to 100 per cent by 2025. By 2030, its goal is to have an run-of-the-mill of 50 per cent recycled content in its bottles and cans, and collect and recycle a hold back or can for every one it sells, regardless of where it comes from.
  • McDonald’s articulate it plans to source 100 per cent of guest packaging from renewable, recycled, or affirmed sources by 2025 and to have guest packaging recycling in all restaurants. The convention has also committed to sustainable «solutions» to plastic straws and has committed $5 million to the incident of compostable and recyclable coffee cups.
  • Nestle said the company’s object is to make 100 per cent of its packaging reusable or recyclable by 2025, and it is also inspecting packaging solutions with its industry partners to reduce plastic habit and develop new approaches to eliminating plastic waste.

But Nestlé also proposed that the real problem was improper disposal, saying the results «exhibit a clear and pressing need for the development of proper infrastructure to manage ransack effectively around the world.»

Recyclability not the mixture: Greenpeace

King thinks much of the trash found during cleanups may participate in been disposed of properly, but spilled into the environment by wind or blow ones tops.

Based on the Canadian results, she added, it didn’t seem that well recyclable items, like plastic bottles, were less run-of-the-mill than ones that are more difficult to recycle, like coffee cups or sustenance wrappers.

Nestlé, Tim Hortons named Canada's top plastic polluters

Many of the companies cited have more than one label. When Greenpeace looked at brands only, both Tim Hortons and Starbucks make a big deal of the top five. (Amy Scaife/Greenpeace)

She hopes the findings of the audit will require an impact on the companies that were responsible, and get them to recognize that naturally making single-use plastics recyclable isn’t the solution.

«We really want the crowds to recognize, ‘Look the efforts that you’ve made or that you’re stating that you’re forging aren’t good enough.’ You actually have to reduce your movie of these products if want to be sure that they’re not going to be cease up in their environment, in our oceans and polluting communities.»

King firmly feels that it’s the companies that make the products that should be ethical, not the consumer.

«We aren’t given a lot of options for buying food and household artifacts in plastic-free packaging,» she said.

She thinks consumers can have the biggest weight by pushing companies for reusable and refillable alternatives to single-use plastic boxing.

Nestlé, Tim Hortons named Canada's top plastic polluters

A World Cleanup Day volunteer collects trash in Halifax. Greenpeace mean it didn’t seem that easily recyclable items, like shapeable bottles, were less common than ones that are numberless difficult to recycle, like coffee cups or food wrappers. (Anthony Poulin/Greenpeace)

Dirk Matten, a professor who esteems the Hewlett-Packard Chair in Corporate Social Responsibility at York University’s Schulich Secondary of Business, said he thinks Greenpeace’s audit is a «very skillful and telling» way to address plastic pollution.

«These companies actually use plastic that contributes to this titanic problem to deliver their products and, I think by this, are forced to believe about a more environmental friendly way of doing this,» he said.

He added that Greenpeace’s suss out could influence organizations like governments and universities in their get decisions.

«To the corporations, I would say don’t fight it,» he said. «Collaborate, address this constructively.»

He added that Greenpeace is an international grouping with a lot of experience that could be used as a resource in finding solutions.

As for consumers, he whispers, they should also be disciplined about their use and disposal of these effects.

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