After a long debate, Raglan Coconut Yoghurt has announced that they have decided to stop producing its Little Yoghi range. Raglan Coconut is a big supporter of the environment partnering with organisations such as Sea Cleaners, KASM, Million Metres and Love NZ, and so struggled to justify producing a product in a single-use pouch. “We've been bothered by the fact that they're in single-use packaging ever since we launched them,” said co-owner Latesha Randall. “We launched them in response to lots of Mums asking for a lunch-box option and saying how handy they'd be because at the time there were no dairy-free yoghurt pouch options on the market.”
Raglan Coconut had made efforts partnering with Love NZ to provide recycling collection stations for the pouches at most supermarkets across the country, and even offered to have customers free post the pouch back to the business to be recycled by the company themselves. However, many consumers were not aware of these options and Raglan Coconut found that they were not be utilised enough, so the tough decision was made to stop producing the product. “We set up recycling programs first with Terracycle and then with LoveNZ but these were both very expensive solutions that we found people didn't make use of, and we have doubts as to the recycling success rates achieved within these programs even when pouches are collected by them. We felt hypocritical to be running beach clean-up programs on one hand and producing a single-use yoghurt pouch on the other.”
Raglan Coconut had been trying to source a sustainable alternative to the single-use pouch but after searching the company was not able to find anything biodegradable that was able to withstand chilled moist environments. “We had thought we'd start with the plastic pouches for the initial launch and work on sourcing compostable options, which we didn't think would be too hard to find. But it turned out to be impossible to find anything biodegradable/compostable that also met the demands of a chilled storage product,” added Randall.
“We have been delighted by how supportive everyone has been so far after the announcement. It was a relief to discover how environmentally aware and supportive our customers are of this move and we feel much happier about putting all our energies into producing glass-packaged products.”
Raglan Coconut will continue to manufacture its popular glass product range and is currently working on two new flavours to be released early next year.