Unilever’s ‘Monkey’ encourages tea drinkers to reduce food waste
Green marketing news - by GreenWise staff
15th May 2012
Consumer goods group Unilever has teamed up with two Essex councils to get householders to cut down on the amount of food waste they send to landfill.
Borough Council, Chelmsford
Council and WRAP
(Waste and Resources Action Programme) have joined force on the campaign. It features PG Tips
’ iconic 'Monkey’ on outdoor and newspaper advertisements encouraging Essex
householders to reduce food waste
by recycling their tea bags.
Britons drink more than 20 million cups of PG tips a day and 96 per cent of British tea is consumed from a tea bag. According to WRAP, tea accounts for around 370,000 tonnes of waste every year – far more than any other unavoidable food waste
produced in the UK.
The poster campaign aims to reduce the amount of tea bags that end up in landfill by encouraging tea drinkers to dispose of used tea bags in their kerbside food waste collection instead of their non-recyclable waste.
Reducing waste to landfill
Unilever, the biggest tea company in the world, said the campaign was part of a wider commitment by the company to reduce waste to landfill by 50 per cent within the next eight years.
"We need to collaborate with organisations such as WRAP and forward-thinking councils such as Brentwood and Chelmsford in order to encourage consumers to recycle wherever they can. Only through such partnerships can we really begin to tackle such challenges," Paul Sherratt, Global Packaging and Sustainability director of Beverages at Unilever, said.
"Unilever’s tea bags are mainly made from organic material so we believe that putting them in with the rest of the household food waste will be a small habit change that everyone can adopt. The advertising campaign is about educating and advising residents to this simple change which we hope will have a great impact on the amount of tea bag waste going to landfill."
Marcus Gover, director of the Closed Loop Economy at WRAP added: "With 52 per cent of local authorities now offering food waste collections, we encourage people to recycle as much of their food waste as possible. WRAP welcomes Unilever’s initiative with Chelmsford and Brentwood as it demonstrates a real commitment to take responsibility for the whole life of their product. We need to see more of this kind of initiative."
Sustainable Living Plan
Under its ambitious Sustainable Living Plan
, Unilever’s goal is to double the size of its business, whilst reducing its overall environmental impact by half by 2020.
The teabag recycling partnership is the second time Unilever has teamed up with local authorities to encourage recycling. In November 2011, the company worked with Torbay Council to support a new mixed plastics recycling initiative, enabling and encouraging Torbay’s 60,000 households to recycle used ice cream and spreads tubs and noodle pots.
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