Front cover design adapted from an image published in Life, from
August 1, 1955, illustrating an article titled “Throwaway Living – disposable items cut down household chores”.

The corporations behind the plastic pollution pandemic: A Greenpeace review of the policies, practices and ambitions of significant fast-moving consumer goods businesses.

The sight of rivers, oceans and communities overwhelmed with plastic waste has become a shocking – and all too common sight. The logos
and images of big consumer brands – clearly
visible in this tsunami of disposable plastic – show where the responsibility lies. These brands – with their throwaway packaging – are promoting and perpetuating our modern throwaway lifestyles that are driving mass production and overconsumption. Now we are facing the evidence that “convenience” has an unacceptable cost; the health of our ecosystems and the living beings that depend on them.

Every minute of every day, the equivalent of one truckload of plastic enters the sea [1], with plastic packaging being one of the highest contributors to the global plastics waste stream [2]. Each one of these packages – made to stand out from the crowd and win brand loyalty – is designed to be used once and thrown away, with little or no thought for the consequences. Now, as these companies look to expand in new markets, they are selling ever more individual units of small, single portions in plastic sachets that are not even possible to recycle.



1. European Parliamentary Research Service Blog
(2013) Recycling rate and total amount of plastic packaging per inhabitant, EU27, 2011. Available: http://epthinktank. eu/2013/11/07/plastic-waste/recycling-rate-and-total-amount- of-plastic-packaging-per-inhabitant/

2. American Chemistry Council and Trucost
(2016) Plastics and sustainability: a valuation of environmental benefits, costs and opportunities. Available: https://plastics.


Download the full report by clicking on the cover or with the link here.