Suntory presents a prototype of 100% vegetable PET bottles

December 9th 2021

Suntory vegetable PET bottle

The Group Suntory presents a 100% vegetable PET bottle prototype, which has been manufactured for brands Orangina, owned by the Group in Europe, and Suntory Tennensu, its brand of mineral water bottled in Japan, the best-selling in the country. It is the result of almost a decade of innovation and development together with anellotech, American sustainable technology company.

This is a boost to Suntory's continued work to promote a circular economy of plastic through the development of sustainable materials, investment in advanced recycling, such as the innovative partnership with Carbios, a pioneer in enzyme recycling, and raising awareness for a more sustainable change in consumer behavior. Suntory aims to commercialize this 100% plant-based bottle as soon as possible to meet its goal of fully sustainable PET bottles by 2030.

PET is produced with two raw materials: 70% terephthalic acid (PTA) and 30% monoethylene glycol (MEG). Suntory's plant-based bottle prototype has been manufactured combining the latest Anellotech technology, consisting of a plant-based paraxylene derived from wood chips converted to plant-based terephthalic acid (PTA), along with monoethylene glycol (MEG) of pre-existing plant origin, made from molasses that the Suntoy Group has been using in Japan since 2013 under the Suntory Tennensui brand.

"We are delighted with this development, since with it we take another step in our purpose of incorporating sustainable PET bottles in the offer to our consumers," he says. Tsunehiko Yokoi, CEO of Suntory MONOZUKURI Expert Ltd. “The importance of this technology is that terephthalic acid is produced from non-food biomass to avoid competition with the food chain; while the MEG is obtained from non-food raw materials ”.

This cutting-edge technology will enable SBFS to meet its goal of using only recycled plastics or plant-based materials. The company is already working on many of its brands to achieve this goal. In the case of Schweppes, the plastic rings of its cans have been replaced by a cardboard alternative, its secondary packaging is produced with 50% recycled material, its packaging is fully recyclable, and next year 100% of its PET bottles will be made of recycled material. recycling.

“We strongly believe that plastics, when manufactured and recycled responsibly, play an important role in the production of soft drinks. We can use the wood chips and molasses to turn them into a plastic that can later be recycled again. In the future, we will integrate this new bioplastic with plastic produced from post-consumer waste. This will allow us to say goodbye to bottles made from fossil fuels, something that also contributes to reducing greenhouse gas emissions ", he says. Vicent meron, R&D Director of Suntory Beverage & Food Europe.

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