The UK Plastic Pact and why it matters

Holly Branson wearing a microphone, sitting on a brown sofa, looking away from the camera
Image from BBC Sounds
Holly Branson
Holly Branson's writing
Published on 25 April 2018

Wonderful to see 42 of the world’s biggest and most popular brands of food, drink and cleaning products have signed up to reduce plastic pollution in the most ambitious pact yet – the UK Plastic Pact.

These 42 brands combined are responsible for the production of 80 per cent of the plastic packaging sold in UK retail outlets. Through the pact, hey have committed to achieve the following by 2025: 

  • Eliminate single-use plastic packaging. 

  • Ensure 100 per cent of their plastic packaging that is reusable, recyclable or compostable.

  • Effectively recycle or compost 70 per cent of plastic packaging. 

  • Use an average of 30 per cent recycled content across all plastic packaging.

Marcus Gover, head of campaign group WRAP, described the Pact as an “once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to rethink and reshape the future of plastic … and curtail the damage plastic waste wrecks on our planet”. 

Holly Branson talking to school children
Image from Adam Slama

With tens of thousands of people across the UK leading the charge, it’s clear that when we work together and use our voice we really can make positive change. These people are calling on retailers to rethink how they use plastic and demanding they provide better consumer choices in their aisles and products, it’s clear that when we work together and use our voice we really can make positive change.

The young people at Canary Wharf College are a wonderful example of driving change; raising awareness of the dangers of plastics through their brilliant ‘plastic fishing’ project – you should give yourselves a massive pat on the back today. Keep up the plastic fishing!