Soft drinks industry continues to cut emissions

By Rod Addy

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Soft drinks, Soft drinks industry, Carbon dioxide, Greenhouse gas, British soft drinks association

Soft drinks manufacturer AG Barr is making substantial progress on environmental initiatives, according to the British Soft Drinks Association’s...

Soft drinks manufacturer AG Barr is making substantial progress on environmental initiatives, according to the British Soft Drinks Association’s (BSDA’s) 2009 sustainability progress report.

It has submitted a planning application for the erection of a two-megawatt wind turbine with the potential to generate more than 60% of the electricity for its Cumbernauld site. The project could reduce annual greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 2,800t.
AG Barr is also introducing a utilities monitoring system at Cumbernauld. A similar system at its Mansfield factory has cut energy use by 7%.
The firm diverted nearly 83% of its waste away from landfill in 2008 and its packaging suppliers aim to reduce the weight of its plastic packaging by up to 139t in 2009-2010. In addition, it is trialling the introduction of recycled polyethyl terephthalate on specific products.
The company has saved 388,000 vehicle miles per year and achieved a further 12% reduction in road miles since 2006 through vehicle re-routing and investment in a transport planning system. It claims the acquisition of a warehouse facility next to its Cumbernauld site will save an extra 80,000 road miles annually.
The BSDA’s report Sustainability in Practice: The Soft Drinks Industry Sustainability Strategy: One Year On​ follows the launch of the soft drinks industry’s Sustainability Strategy in June 2008. The document was unveiled at the BSDA’s annual lunch in London.
Included in the document were other case studies from a range of BSDA members. They charted Britvic’s progress in cutting 511t of GHG emissions since last year and Princes’ work to take 46% of packaging weight - 470t of plastic annually - out of its supply chain.
Also at the lunch, Britvic chief executive Paul Moody was re-elected as BSDA president and Roger White, chief executive of AG Barr, was elected vice president.
“We are both looking forward to serving and leading the industry in the coming year,” said Moody in a letter to BSDA members.
“No doubt it will be another challenging year for the industry as we experience continued uncertainty, particularly in the economy and in the world of politics. But in the face of this uncertainty, I believe that the soft drinks industry is in a strong position to face the future.”
Moody pledged to take the industry forward in its commitments to tackle climate change and health and wellbeing.