UK: New Carlsberg bottle with 90% less carbon impact

As glass bottles account for around 10% of the total beer-in-hand emissions for Carlsberg Marston’s Brewing Company (CMBC), the UK arm of Danish Carlsberg Group has teamed up with UK-based glass bottle supplier Encirc for the development of a new, more environmentally friendly bottle.

Encirc and CMBC have developed a new bottle that uses 100% biofuel and increases recycled content of the bottles to 100% while maintaining quality. The trial has significant potential to support the brewer’s target to cut emissions across its value chain as part of Carlsberg Group’s Together Towards ZERO program. The carbon impact of each bottle is cut by up to 90%, with potential to transform the bottle from the highest-carbon-impact packaging type to the lowest.

Encirc is since 2015 part of the Spanish Vidrala Group and market leader in glass container design, manufacturing, bottling and logistics solutions for the UK and Irish food and beverage industries. It has a yearly production of more than 4 billion glass containers from three plants in England, Northern Ireland and Italy.

This is the latest in a series of innovations to cut the carbon impact of packaging across CMBC. In 2019, on the relaunch of Carlsberg Danish Pilsner in the UK, the bottles were redesigned to make them 10 grams lighter than the ones they replaced, saving over 130 tons of glass in the first year alone.

“We are delighted this ground-breaking trial has successfully proven and produced ultra-low carbon Carlsberg glass beer bottles,” says Mark Comline, Senior Category Director Group Packaging Materials, Carlsberg Group. “Across Carlsberg we are inspired to work together towards a zero-carbon future. Trials like this in partnership with Encirc are a massive leap towards making it a reality.”

As part of the Glass Futures industry initiative, the trial will feed into UK Government policy through the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) Energy Innovation Program.

Adrian Curry, Managing Director at Encirc comments: “This is a truly momentous occasion for glass. We have set the standard globally with this trial and now the glass industry needs to work towards realizing what we’ve proved is possible. We now know that glass can be the most sustainable of all packaging types and must all work together to ensure that happens.”

Carlsberg Group has also been recognized for its action on climate change with a place on the prestigious CDP A list, and for its work in engaging with suppliers to tackle climate change through the 2020 Supplier Engagement Leader board.

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