Coca-Cola claims its customers want plastic bottles to stay

by Perry Wheeler

January 22, 2020

Washington, DC – Speaking at the World Economic Forum meeting in Davos, Coca-Cola argued that people still want to buy its plastic bottles. The company produces an estimated 110 billion plastic bottles globally each year. Coca-Cola was recently named the world’s worst plastic polluter in 2019 for the second year in a row, following 484 cleanups and brand audits conducted by Break Free From Plastic.

Last week, Coca-Cola announced that it was investing in river cleanups to keep its plastic out of the oceans, and was criticized for ignoring the need for plastic reduction.

In response to Coca-Cola’s comments at Davos, Greenpeace USA Plastics Campaigner Kate Melges said:

“It is mighty convenient for the world’s worst plastic polluter to insist that people want their single-use plastic around. Coca-Cola continues to show how out of touch it is with the environmental crises communities around the world are facing. The solution is not to simply swap one throwaway material for another or continue to fall back on recycling. The solution is for Coca-Cola and other consumer goods giants to fundamentally rethink how they’re bringing products to people, centering systems of reuse and package-free options. We cannot afford the levels of inaction that Coke has shown thus far. Soon, the company will realize just how sick and tired people are of its plastic addiction.

“As long as companies like Coke keep pushing the myth that their bottles are being turned into new bottles over and over again, we are never going to solve the plastic pollution crisis. In the U.S., only 29 percent of plastic bottles are collected for recycling, and almost none of that is being made back into bottles. Instead, Coke’s plastic bottles are being made from fossil fuels, which is a fact they’d rather not talk about.”


Contact: Perry Wheeler, Greenpeace USA Senior Communications Specialist, P: 301-675-8766

Perry Wheeler

By Perry Wheeler

Perry Wheeler is a senior communications specialist at Greenpeace USA.

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