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Corona launches plastic-free six pack rings

by Business Wire 28 Nov 2018 09:21 UTC
100% plastic-free six pack rings - The new rings will be piloted in Mexico at the beginning of the year, with plans to test in the United Kingdom next year. © Business Wire

Corona announced that it will pilot plastic-free six pack rings in select markets as part of the brand's commitment with Parley for the Oceans to lead the industry with eco-friendly packaging.

Both Corona and Parley have a shared mission to help protect the world's oceans and beaches from marine plastic pollution. The partnership began with a commitment to protect 100 islands by 2020 and expands to include the pursuit of scalable innovation that can change the status quo.

With roughly 8MM metric tons of plastic entering the ocean each year1, there is a need to confront the issue on multiple fronts, which is why Corona has adopted Parley's A.I.R. strategy to not only "avoid" and "intercept" plastic as much as possible, but also help "redesign" solutions that use the material.

"Our oceans are under attack. We are taking their life in rapid speed, destroying the chemistry that allows us to be here. Therefore we are bidding on the few who take the lead in true change. The ones who are shaping the future with us. Corona is such an Ocean Champion, a powerful ally in our war against marine plastic pollution — and in building the material revolution that will lead us beyond it. We share the goal of phasing plastic out for good, because we simply can't afford its toxic impact anymore." Cyrill Gutsch, Founder and CEO, Parley for the Oceans

Although Corona is primarily packaged in glass and fiberboard, the brand sees an opportunity to help redesign a common source of plastic in the category: six pack rings. The plastic-free rings being tested are made from plant-based biodegradable fibers, with a mix of by-product waste and compostable materials. If left in the environment, they break down into organic material that is not harmful to wildlife, whereas the industry standard plastic six pack rings are made from a photodegradable form of polyethylene that results in increasingly smaller pieces of plastic if not recycled.

Although most plastic rings are recyclable, the reality is that the majority of all plastic ever created hasn't been recycled2, which is the motivation for brands like Corona to pursue solutions that avoid the material entirely. That journey starts in the brand's homeland of Mexico, where the plastic-free rings will be piloted in Tulum at the beginning of the year.

"The beach is an important part of Corona's DNA and we have been working with Parley to address the issue on the frontlines where plastic is physically accumulating," said Evan Ellman, Corona Better World Director. "We also recognize the influence a global brand like Corona can have on the industry, and with the support of Parley, are pursuing scalable solutions like plastic-free six pack rings that can become a new standard to avoid plastic for good."

Since the partnership launched in 2017, Corona and Parley have conducted over three hundred clean-ups in over 15 countries, including the Maldives, Palau, Mexico, Dominican Republic, Chile, Indonesia, Italy, South Africa and Australia, with over seven thousand volunteers from more than two hundred locations participating in the project, totalling in more than three million pounds of plastic waste collected.

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