Danish beer giant Carlsberg has unveiled designs for what it claims is the world’s first paper beer bottle made with sustainable and recyclable wood fibres.
The bottle forms part of Carlsberg’s Together Towards Zero initiative, which includes a commitment to reach zero carbon emissions and a 30% reduction in its “full-value-chain carbon footprint” by 2030.
The brewer has revealed two prototypes for its green fibre bottle. Both are made from sustainably sourced wood fibres and have an “inner barrier” allowing the bottle to hold beer. One uses a thin recycled PET polymer film barrier, while the other has a bio-based PEF polymer film barrier.
Carlsberg initially launched plans for the project back in 2015, working alongside EcoXpac, BillerudKorsnäs and post-doctoral researchers from the Technical University of Denmark. This collaboration has resulted in the creation of paper bottle company Paboco, a joint venture between BillerudKorsnäs and bottle manufacturing specialist ALPLA.
Companies also working with Paboco include Absolut, Coca-Cola and L’Oréal. Last year, Carlsberg invested in a number of other sustainable solutions, including recycled shrink film, greener label ink and Snap Pack, which replaces the plastic packaging around its six-pack cans.
Myriam Shingleton, vice president group development at Carlsberg Group, said: “We continue to innovate across all our packaging formats, and we are pleased with the progress we’ve made on the Green Fibre Bottle so far. While we are not completely there yet, the two prototypes are an important step towards realising our ultimate ambition of bringing this breakthrough to market. Innovation takes time and we will continue to collaborate with leading experts in order to overcome remaining technical challenges, just as we did with our plastic-reducing Snap Pack.”
“The work with our partners since 2015 on the Green Fibre Bottle illustrates that this kind of innovation can happen when we work together. We’re delighted that other like-minded companies have now joined us as part of Paboco’s paper bottle community. Partnerships such as these, ones that are united by a desire to create sustainable innovations, are the best way to bring about real change.”
It follows news that Scottish lager brand Tennent’s has invested £14.2 million in sustainable initiatives including scrapping plastic packaging, using green energy and implementing waste management practices.
From Spring 2020, cans of Tennent’s lager will be packaged in cardboard rather than plastic, with plastic rings and shrink-wrap phased out. This will result in 150 tonnes less plastic produced per year. Tennent’s has become the first brewer to join The UK Plastics Pact, which intends to ban single-use plastic used in packaging by 2021.
Carlsberg spent £20 million on a marketing campaign in the UK this year which admits its flagship beer is “probably not the best in the world”, at the same announcing the roll-out of a new, premium-positioned pilsner that will eventually replace the original lager beer.