Organised by campaign group 38 Degrees, the stunt followed a petition sent to the manufacturer, which has been signed by more than 290,000 people, as of reporting.
Campaign manager Lorna Greenwood said the group’s members chipped in to pay for the mobile billboards because they wanted to send a message to Walkers’ bosses.
“Our research proves that big companies like Walkers aren’t taking responsibility for the astounding amount of environmentally damaging plastic waste they are producing,” said Greenwood.
“There’s huge public concern about the amount of plastic being produced, and that means it’s crunch time for Walkers to decide if they will listen to their customers.”
A spokesman for Walkers’ owner PepsiCo said the company was committed to achieving 100% recyclable, compostable or biodegradable packaging by 2025.
“We have a number of initiatives in place to reduce the amount of packaging we use and, at the same time, we’re examining the use of different packaging materials, both plant- and paper-based,” said the spokesman.
“We don’t have all the answers yet, which is why we’re collaborating with a number of leaders in this area to learn and share the latest science and practical solutions.”
However, 38 Degrees called the promise “woefully inadequate”. It called on the producer to “listen to the Great British public” and ditch its plastic packaging now, not in seven years’ time.
Campaigner Geraint Ashcroft (who started the petition) and other members of 38 Degrees are set to meet with senior executives at PepsiCo tomorrow to demand they become more ambitious about tackling the problem of plastic waste.
“Manufacturers need to take responsibility and it’s time Walkers becomes part of the solution rather than part of the problem,” added Ashcroft.
Meanwhile, meat processor Tulip has become the latest food business to sign up to the UK Plastics Pact, whose members include PepsiCo, as part of its commitments to tackling plastic usage and food waste as part of its new CSR policy.