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Diageo announces creation of world's first plastic-free, paper-based spirits bottle

Diageo, the maker of Johnnie Walker, Smirnoff, and Guinness, has today announced that it has created the world’s first 100% plastic-free, paper-based spirits bottle. The bottle will be made entirely from sustainably sourced wood, and will debut with Scotch whisky giant Johnnie Walker in early 2021.

The news comes as Diageo announces that it has launched a new partnership with venture management company Pilot Lite to launch Pulpex Limited, a new world-leading sustainable packaging technology company.

Pulpex Limited has developed a first-of-its-kind scalable paper-based bottle which has been designed and developed without any plastic, and is expected to be fully recyclable. The bottle is made from sustainably sourced pulp to meet food-safe standards and will be fully recyclable in standard waste streams. 

The company’s technology allows it to produce a variety of plastic-free, single-mould bottles that can be used across a range of consumer goods; the packaging has been designed to contain a variety of liquid products. The technology will allow brands to modify their packaging designs, or move existing designs into paper, without compromising on quality. Moreover, it will form part of Diageo’s commitment towards number 12 of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, ‘Responsible Consumption and Production’.

To make the most of the technology’s versatility, Pulpex Limited has also established a partner consortium of world-leading fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) companies in non-competing categories, including Unilever and PepsiCo, with further partners expected to be announced later in the year. The partners are each planning to launch their own branded paper bottles, based on Pulpex Limited’s design and technology, in 2021.

Ewan Andrew, chief sustainability officer at Diageo PLC, 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 of existence."

13 July 2020 -