Sprite will no longer be sold in green bottles

Coca-Cola said Wednesday it is changing its packaging from green to clear plastic starting August 1 as part of a broader effort to be more environmentally responsible. Sprite’s current plastic contains green polyethylene terephthalate (PET), an additive that cannot be recycled into new bottles, a key initiative by the company to reduce plastic waste.

“Removing paint from bottles improves the quality of recycled material,” Julian Ochoa, CEO of R3CYCLE, a plastics group helping Coca-Cola improve recycling, said in a statement. “When recycled, Sprite’s clear PET bottles can be recycled into bottles, helping to develop a circular economy for plastic.”

Customers will also notice the updated logo and packaging design on the Sprite bottles, which are meant to provide a more “consistent look and sound around the world,” the company said. The famous green tint will continue to be used on Sprite labels.

Other drinks that use green bottles from the Coke range, including Fresca, Seagram’s and Mello Yello, will also be replaced with clear containers in the coming months.

Coca Cola (knockout) reported higher-than-expected second-quarter earnings on Tuesday, citing strong demand, and raised its full-year revenue guidance.

The beverage giant is often criticized for its contribution to environmentally harmful plastic waste. In 2020, environmental firm Break Free From Plastic named the company the #1 plastic polluter in the world. Its logos and branding have been found on 13,834 pieces of discarded plastic in 51 countries, often in public places like parks and beaches.

In 2018, Coke announced their Zero Waste Initiative with the ultimate goal of collecting and recycling one bottle or can of every bottle sold by 2030. Part of this initiative included the release last year of a new 13.2 oz bottle that is made from 100% recycled plastic.
On Wednesday, the company also announced that most Dasani bottles in the US and Canada will now be sold from 100% recycled plastic. Coke said the innovation is projected to reduce an estimated 20 million pounds of new plastic waste compared to 2019.

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