Mondelēz International announced it will source recycled plastic using advanced recycling technology to use in a range of Cadbury chocolate blocks sold in New Zealand and Australia; a world-first for the chocolate brand.
Cadbury had sourced the equivalent of 30 percent of the plastic needed to wrap the Cadbury Dairy Milk family block range from recycled sources.
Many Kiwis are familiar with the ability to drop off their soft plastics through the Soft Plastics Recycling Scheme and have the packaging recycled into new products such as fence posts, vegetable gardens, parking bumpers and garden edging. However, the development of advanced recycling technology makes it possible to recycle soft plastics like its Cadbury wrappers into new packaging that keeps snacks fresh and safe. With this transition, Cadbury fans could look forward to playing an even greater role in the circular economy.
The volume of recycled plastic being used is enough for 50 million family blocks of Cadbury Dairy Milk Chocolate which - if laid end to end - would stretch from Auckland to San Francisco.
Cara Liebrock, managing director of Mondelēz New Zealand, said the company's investment in this emerging technology is another step forward in its packaging commitments and a must-do by brands to lead sustainability solutions.
“We have been working hard on innovating our packaging and finding solutions that rely on fewer virgin materials,” says Cara. “This world-first for Cadbury is another example of us tackling the global challenges presented by packaging waste. On top of us tapping into the very latest technology to source recycled material for our Cadbury Dairy Milk blocks, we are also continuing to advocate for advanced recycling solutions and infrastructure here in New Zealand," said Liebrock.
Katherine Rich, CEO of the New Zealand Food & Grocery Council, welcomed the move.
“We are continuing to see the Food & Grocery sector front up with solutions to the environmental challenges that we are facing and this example by Mondelēz is no different,” said Rich.
“I’m immensely proud of the leadership food manufacturers are taking in the area of sustainability and applaud this initiative by Mondelēz to help drive a more circular economy," she added.
Lynn Mayes, manager of The Packaging Forum's Soft Plastic Recycling Scheme, concurred.
“By clearly promoting the scheme on the pack, Mondelēz plays an important role in driving consumer behaviour for recycling soft plastics. Introducing recycled plastic is the next step in driving a more circular economy and underscores the importance of investing in emerging technologies," said Mayes.
The recycled plastic material will be used in Cadbury Dairy Milk family blocks ranges made at the Cadbury Tasmania factory and distributed across New Zealand and Australia. At this stage, the recycled plastic material sourced equated to about 30 percent of the plastic needed to wrap these products.
This is just the first step to using recycled soft plastics as a circular material as the company is determined to increase the amount of recycled material in its packaging.
The first Cadbury Dairy Milk blocks to include the recycled soft plastic in its packaging will be available in New Zealand supermarkets from September 2022.