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Diageo to début Johnnie Walker in innovative paper-based bottle

British beverage giant, Diageo, will launch its Johnnie Walker Scotch whisky in a 100% plastic-free, paper-based bottle, as part of its sustainability efforts.

The new sustainable bottle, which is completely made from sustainably-sourced wood, is a result of a new partnership between Diageo and venture management company, Pilot Lite.

The firms have established a new partnership to create new sustainable packaging technology company, Pulpex.

Pulpex has created a partner consortium with FMCG companies such as Unilever and PepsiCo in non-competing categories to better apply the technology in every area of life. More partners are expected to be included by the end of this year.

Unilever chief R&D officer, Richard Slater, said: “We believe in tackling plastic waste through innovation and collaboration. We are going to halve our use of virgin plastic at Unilever, reducing our use of plastic packaging by more than 100,000 tonnes in the next five years.”

The consortium partners are each expecting to introduce their own branded paper bottles, developed using Pulpex’s design and technology, in 2021.

Pulpex’s technology

Pulpex has developed a scalable paper-based bottle, made from sustainably sourced pulp and which complies with international food and drink safety standards and is fully recyclable.

The contents are protected by a liner, made of resin rather than plastic, which holds the liquid but disintegrates when emptied. The caps will be of regular aluminium construction.

The new packaging, which is designed to contain a variety of liquid products, is in line with Diageo’s commitment towards goal 12 of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals: ‘Responsible Consumption and Production’.

Diageo chief sustainability officer, Ewan Andrew, said: “We’re proud to have created this world first. We are constantly striving to push the boundaries within sustainable packaging and this bottle has the potential to be truly ground-breaking.

“It feels fitting that we should launch it with Johnnie Walker, a brand that has often led the way in innovation throughout its 200 years existence.”

In June this year, Diageo North America announced plans to use bottles made from 100% recycled PET for its blended American whiskey, Seagram’s 7 Crown.

Additionally, this follows recent news of the commercialised debut of the Frugal bottle, a new paper bottle developed in the UK.


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