279: Paper Bottles, plastic free


The current rate of demand for glass is unsustainable. Globally, the world is using up 50 billion tonnes of sand every year, which is twice the amount that our rivers can replenish in the same time frame. Commonly harvested from seabeds and riverbeds, the demand for sand is disrupting marine ecosystems and microorganisms that depend upon it for survival, and leaving coastal communities vulnerable to flooding caused by erosion as well.


Paper-based spirits bottle.

In Spring 2021, the British multinational beverage alcohol company Diageo, whose brand portfolio includes Smirnoff, Guinness and Johnnie Walker, debuted the world’s first paper-based spirits bottle, produced by Pulpex Ltd., originally developed by Lextar for Hercules, Inc. of Wilmington, Delaware. The bottle, which is fully recyclable, is made using sustainably sourced wood pulp and contains no plastic.

Diageo has started with one size and variant of Johnnie Walker, the famous brand of Scotch whisky, expanding its brand partnerships later this year. Diageo unveiled an impressive list of multinationals backing the technology, including Unilever and PepsiCo, who are expected to launch their own branded paper bottles soon after.

Meanwhile, Martin Myerscough, inventor and co-founder of Frugalpac of Ipswich, Suffolk, England has also launched a paper wine bottle, based on the already proven technology which produced the Frugal Carton and then the Frugal Cup, the world’s first take-away coffee cup.

Frugal Bottle is made from 94% recycled paper with a food-grade liner to hold the wine or spirit. At just 83g it is five times lighter than a normal glass bottle It’s easy to recycle again – simply separate the liner from the paper bottle and put them in your different recycling bins. As the Frugal Bottle is made from recycled paper, it allows for 360-degree branding across the bottle and it can be produced in the heart of any bottling facility.

The first wine to go on sale in the Frugal Bottle is from the award-winning Italian vineyard Cantina Goccia with its 3Q, an unwooded Sangiovese red with a hint of Merlot and Cabernet Sauvignon.

What you can do: Be aware of packaging and look out for sustainable options. 

Discover Solution 280: Radiative passive cooling system

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