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What is Nestlé doing to tackle packaging waste?

Packaging & Recycling – ASK NESTLÉ

Our vision is that none of our packaging, including plastics, ends up in landfill, in oceans, lakes and rivers. We are working hard to deliver on it and help achieve a waste-free future.

To achieve this, our commitment is that 100% of our packaging is recyclable or reusable by 2025. We’ve made a number of global commitments to get there, including the elimination of non-recyclable plastics.

We are determined to reduce our use of single-use plastics, by introducing reusable packaging, new delivery systems and innovative business models everywhere we operate and sell our products. Building on our commitment, we will reduce the use of virgin plastics by one third by 2025.

What is Nestlé doing to tackle plastic packaging waste?

Plastic packaging plays an important role in ensuring food and drink arrive safe and fresh. It also helps reduce food loss and waste. We need to carefully consider alternatives before making changes.

We are phasing out hard-to-recycle plastics that we will stop using to assist recycling efforts. We are also working on new functional, safe and environmentally friendly packaging solutions for our products through the Nestlé Institute of Packaging Sciences, the first of its kind in the food industry.

As well, we are working with industry partners to explore different packaging solutions to reduce our use of plastics, facilitate recycling and develop new solutions to help eliminate plastic waste.

In some countries, we have already launched products in new paper-based packaging, and we will soon begin to have some products on shelf with this packaging in Australia.

In the meantime, as we have made a commitment to making 100% of our packaging recyclable or reusable by 2025, we are working on many changes across our entire packaging range.

Is Nestlé packaging recyclable?

The packaging of around half of our products is fully recyclable, and even more are partially recyclable.

A number of factors determine if packaging is recyclable - not just the material it’s made of, but also its colour, weight and size. We have committed to making 100% of our packaging recyclable or reusable by 2025 and are working on many changes across our entire packaging range to achieve this.

How are you helping consumers to recycle correctly?

We are rolling out the Australasian Recycling Label (ARL) on all our locally made products. The ARL provides simple and easy to understand on-pack recycling information, by showing which bin to recycle in.

What is the Australasian Recycling Label?

The Australasian Recycling Label offers clear instructions on pack of what to do with every bit of packaging – whether it goes in the recycling bin, rubbish bin, or special instructions that should be followed, such as returning it to store for recycling.

Australiasian Recycling Label


We are committed to featuring the Australasian Recycling Label on all of our locally made products by the end of 2020.

For more information on the Australasian Recycling Label, visit:

What is REDcycle?

We are a partner of the REDcycle program, a soft plastics recycling program which collects soft plastics via in-store collection bins for recycling.

Look for the Australasian Recycling Label and the REDcycle logo on the back of pack to know if your soft plastics can be recycled, and then drop them off in-store on your next visit.

For more information on REDcycle, visit:



What is Nestlé’s partnership with iQRenew?

Nestlé will partner with iQRenew on an Australian trial of kerbside soft plastic collection, aiming to develop a scalable model to collect, sort and process soft plastic.

Why does Nestlé use plastic at all?

Plastics packaging plays an important role in safely delivering food and drinks to people, and in reducing food loss and waste. We use a range of materials, including glass, metal, paper and plastics.

Plastics offer a unique combination of malleability, availability, hygiene and safety, making them ideal packaging materials. The properties of plastic polymers also provide a lot of flexibility and freedom in design, whilst being lightweight but strong, enabling packaging to be tailored to the product. There has been considerable progress in ensuring the use of only a minimum adequate amount of plastic packaging to pack products safely, and the recovery of plastic at the end of its useful life. Nevertheless, there is much more to do. Indeed, plastic must not end in nature and we are taking action to help create a waste-free future.

Does Nestlé use recycled content in its packaging?

Currently, 31% of our packaging in Australia includes recycled content. We use recycled content for products packaged in glass, cardboard and metal – for example, our Nescafé glass coffee jars and Milo tins use recycled content.

Globally, our overall recycled plastic content use is currently 2%. Additionally, we use 5% recycled content in our PET water bottles.

We are committed to increasing the proportion of recycled content we use in our packaging and continue to explore all opportunities to create and obtain sufficient volumes of food-grade quality recycled content. This includes commitment to source up to 2 million metric tons of food-grade recycled plastics and allocate more than CHF 1.5 billion to pay a premium for these materials between now and 2025.

Nestlé has announced plans to "create a market for food-grade recycled plastics" – what does this mean?

We are keen to increase our share of recycled food-grade plastics but recycled food-grade plastics come in limited supply. The economics of plastic recycling are complex, but in nutshell, it’s cheaper today for plastic manufacturers to produce virgin plastics than it is to produce food-grade recycled plastics. Our plastic suppliers need to receive financial assurances to make the leap.

We have committed AUD$2.3bn to buy food grade recycled plastic packaging, to encourage investment in developing this sector and boost supply. We are aiming to reduce our use of virgin plastics by a third by 2025, in part by driving a market for food grade recycled plastic packaging.

How are you phasing-out non-recyclable or hard-to-recycle plastics?

We have identified a 'Negative List' of difficult-to-recycle packaging types and materials which we will not use in new product packaging and a timetable to phase out their use in existing packaging. This includes PVC and polystyrene, pigments containing carbon black and plastic straws.

What is Nestlé doing about plastic water bottles?

We are aiming to use 100% recycled PET in all our plastic water bottles by 2025.

PET used in water bottles provides lightness, resistance and transparency, and is 100% recyclable. However, half of all bottles are not recycled – a significant amount end up in landfill or as marine debris.

We are committed to finding ways to improve both plastics collection and recycling rates to ensure that we can maximise the full environmental and economic benefits of PET bottles as a reusable resource.

What is Nestlé’s partnership with iQ Renew?

Nestlé has partnered with iQ Renew on an Australian trial of kerbside soft plastic collection, aiming to develop a scalable model to collect, sort and process soft plastic.

For the latest information on the trial, click here.