Brewer removes PET from its production lines - official

07Jun 2021
The Guardian Reporter
The Guardian
 Brewer removes PET from its production lines - official

​​​​​​​TANZANIAN Breweries Limited Plc (TBL) has removed all polyethylene terephthalate plastic (PET) from its production lines, in keeping with its commitment to sustainable and circular packaging.

The decision is in line with TBL’s parent company AB InBev’s goal of 100  per  cent of product being in packaging that is returnable or made from majority recycled content by 2025. It is also aligned with the national FYDP III goal of environmental sustainability and the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Although PET is recyclable, the proportion of recycled content in a finished product is typically lower than other materials such as glass or stainless steel, and PET contributes higher carbon emissions than other materials throughout its lifecycle. Plastic pollution in Tanzania not only poses a danger to environmental health it clogs water and sanitation systems, particularly in urban areas during the country’s rainy season.

According to the World Bank, the world generates approximately 242 million tonnes of plastic waste each year. This waste clogs drains and waterways, causes respiratory issues when burned, shortens animal life spans and contaminates water bodies. Plastics take up to 500 years to decompose, instead breaking down into microparticles which disrupt food chains and degrade natural habitats.

TBL previously produced non-alcoholic malt beverage Grand Malt which is enjoyed by many men country-wide, in the PET format but has moved production of the popular beverage to a highly sustainable, light-weighted, stainless-steel, recyclable can. As a result, TBL has prevented 166 tonnes of virgin plastic and 10 tonnes of high-density polyethylene (HDPE) from reaching the Tanzanian consumers every year.  The new sleek aluminium cans are 100 per cent recyclable and manufactured with 31 per cent recycled content.

Jacques Els, AB InBev’s procurement director for the East Africa Business Unit, said: “We are constantly seeking solutions to increase the recycled materials in our packaging in a way that makes sense from a business as well as a sustainability point of view. Our motivation goes beyond just the environmental impacts – circular packaging enables us to contribute to building economic security and resilience through the creation and support of networks of local businesses that improve livelihoods.”

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