IFEU, an independent research organisation, was asked to study two scenarios on primary packaging used in Europe for Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) excluding beverages:
- what if all rigid packaging were substituted by flexible packaging?
- what if all rigid packaging were replaced by flexible packaging?
The results of this study updated in 2019 show that in the first scenario – substituting rigid by flexible – the total weight of primary packaging used for non-beverage FMCGs in Europe could be reduced by 21 million tonnes per year ( a 70% reduction) and its Global Warming Potential (GWP) could be reduced by 33%.
The opposite scenario – substituting flexible by rigid – would increase the total GWP of the primary packaging used for non-beverage FMCGs in Europe by about 31%. This is despite the much higher actual recycling rates of rigid packaging. Even if the recycling rate of rigid packaging was raised to 100%, this would still lead to 14% higher GWP.
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