Suntory Beverage and Food GB and Ireland (SBF GB&I) has redesigned its Ribena bottle so that it is now made from 100% recycled PET and can be fully recycled.
From January 2021, all 500ml Ribena bottles manufactured in the UK and Ireland will use the new design.
SBF GB&I has invested £1.6 million in the redesign, which took two years to complete.
Part of the redesign process involved finding an alternative to the dark coloured, long sleeve that previously covered the bottles and made them difficult to detect with sorting technology.
This meant the testing process of the new design with a smaller label involved checking that the drink would not be affected by extra light exposure while on the shelf.
Following this redesign, SBF GB&I now plans to apply the work it has done with Ribena to other brands including Lucozade Sport and Lucozade Energy in the next months. Once complete, this should also save 1,100 tonnes of plastic each year along with the Ribena redesign due to the smaller sleeve.
SBF GB&I chief operating officer Carol Robert said: “Making sure that our bottles can be easily recycled and turned back into bottles is an important part of our journey towards full circularity and net zero emissions.
“Simplifying the packaging of our drinks to help consumers to recycle is just one of our many investments in making our soft drinks more sustainable. From climate-change resilient blackcurrants to promoting biodiversity on our farms, we’re working to make Ribena more sustainable from bush to bottle.”
The Recycling Association has been highly critical of manufacturers who have not taken responsibility for the full life cycle and recyclability of their products.
Suntory Beverage & Food GB&I have been proactive in this space and have developed a fantastic new bottle for their Ribena brand.
Not only is the bottle made from 100% recycled plastic but the label has been minimised to ensure the bottle can be easily identified, sorted and recycled using standard industry technology.
SBF GB&I are doing the right thing and other manufacturers should follow their lead.