Diageo packs in the plastic with £16m investment in eco-friendly wrappers

Diageo is investing £16 million to reduce the amount of plastics used in its beer packaging by removing plastic ring carriers and shrink wrap from its multipacks of Guinness, Harp and Smithwick’s.

Multipacks of Guinness, Harp and Smithwicks will soon be sold in cardboard packaging. Picture: Naoise Culhane

The global drinks giant – Scotland’s largest distiller – will replace current multi-can packaging for its beers with sustainably sourced, recyclable and biodegradable cardboard packs to be used across Ireland from August and rolled out to Great Britain and other markets next year.

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It estimates the change will reduce plastic usage by more than 400 tonnes per year – the equivalent of 40 million 50 centilitre plastic bottles.

Diageo last year announced a target to ensure that 100 per cent of its plastics are widely recyclable, reusable or compostable by 2025.

Chief sustainability officer and president of global supply and procurement David Cutter said the firm has been “working tirelessly” to make its packaging more environmentally friendly.