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Coca-Cola partners with social enterprise to tackle waste and raise funds for charities

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Coca-Cola Australia has partnered with social enterprise CitizenBlue to increase recycling and boost funding for environment and community charities.

The two companies will come together to create new solutions to NSW’s waste challenge and introduce more drink container recycling options at venues and events, with proceeds of the waste collected going back to charities.

“This partnership is a first step towards both not-for-profit groups and a major beverage leader working together to tackle our waste issue. We are both part of the solution,” said Jeff Angel from CitizenBlue.

CitizenBlue, a collective of seven environmental not-for-profit organisations, including the Total Environment Centre, Surfrider Foundation and Landcare NSW, will work together with Coca-Cola to strategically place drink container recycling bins in key venues and events across NSW in order to decrease plastic wastage.

The waste is then collected and sorted through the NSW Return and Earn Container Deposit Scheme (CDS), and then recycled and transformed to enable the creation of new products, including bottles and cans.

The event and venue bins supported by Coca-Cola are expected to help collect around 7.5 million containers per year.

This comes as the NSW government reported in December 2018 a 44 per cent drop in Return and

Earn eligible drink containers in the litter stream since November 2017. Coca-Cola and CitizenBlue’s initiative is designed to help enhance the Scheme and turn existing waste into community money, with proceeds of the collected containers going to charities.

“Our aim is for these activities to enhance and promote existing recycling efforts through the CDS in NSW. More organisations and businesses coming together to find solutions to tackle waste and recycling is better for the environment, the sector, not to mention a funding boost for charities,” said Susie Crick, Chairperson of the Surfrider Foundation Australia.

This partnership forms part of Coca-Cola’s recently announced global sustainable packaging strategy, including a goal to collect and recycle the equivalent of 100 per cent of the packaging they sell by 2030.

“Locally, we are focusing our efforts on designing packaging to be 100 per cent recyclable across our entire portfolio and increasing the recycled content we use in our packaging. This partnership is part of the next step for Cola-Cola in tackling drink container waste, whilst inspiring positive change to ensure our bottles and cans have another life beyond their first use,” Christine Black, Director Public Affairs and Sustainability at Coca-Cola South Pacific, said.

The Coca-Cola CitizenBlue collection bins are expected to roll out in the early New Year at festivals and venues in NSW.

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