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01 Nov 2023

Walkers develops plastic-free, paper-based packaging for its baked crisps

Walkers develops plastic-free, paper-based packaging for its baked crisps

The well-known crisp brand has recently announced that it will be extending the use of paper packaging on its products, after the successful trial that took place over 800 Tesco stores in 2023.

Walkers have designed a new, innovative style of outer packaging for all of its ‘baked’ multipack products, which is manufactured entirely out of paper. The new packaging is very well designed and has been manufactured with both consumers and the environment in mind. Whilst the packaging can easily be recycled by consumers, simply through putting it in the recycling bin with other paper-based recycling items, that will be dealt with through kerbside collection. The manufacturing process also puts a lot of thought into making the product as green as possible, through ensuring that the new packaging uses less virgin plastic and reduces greenhouse gases.

One of the benefits for this project is that using paper reduces the brands consumption of virgin plastic by an estimated 180 tons annually. This ultimately significantly reduces the amount of waste produced through the previous manufacturing process. Furthermore, this development by Walkers is a breakthrough within the savory snack industry, as this is one of the first times paper-based packaging has been used in the UK’s savory snack flexible packaging sector.

This project is part of a much larger sustainability plan, “PepsiCo Positive” which is a movement being led by the company Walkers came from, PepsiCo. This plan includes similar projects to this paper-based packaging, such as PepsiCo’s initiative to find an alternative solution to the use of fossil-based plastic used to manufacture crisp packets. Plus, the overall aim for this project is to achieve net-zero emissions by 2040, through lots of these kinds of projects creating a combined effort.

PepsiCo UK and Ireland’s sustainable packaging lead, Gareth Callan commented, “We are constantly innovating new ways to remove virgin plastic in our packaging. It’s exciting to see our successful trial of this paper pack lead to a nationwide roll-out. At this scale, the new packaging will deliver a huge reduction in virgin plastic, while also helping to lower our carbon footprint.”

After the results from the pilot which took place over 800 Tesco stores, came back as a success, the company planned its next steps which will be to extend this trial into other stores within the coming months, with the hope that the project will keep being a success.

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