The Recycling Association has blasted the numerous materials used in the packaging for both Pringles and Lucozade.
It said Pringle’s metal base, plastic cap, metal tear-off lid, and foil-lined cardboard sleeve made the packs harder to separate – and were described in a report as a “nightmare”.
Speaking exclusively to Packaging News, a spokesperson said the poly-foil lining on Pringles cans is an exceptionally thin layer that protects the crisps from moisture and oxygen, maintaining the flavour and freshness that consumers expect, which could not be achieved using cardboard.
“This layer is applied to 100% recycled paperboard which is renewable and recycled. The thin foil membrane is the least amount of lid necessary to safely and securely close the snack can for sale to the public,” said the spokesperson.
The plastic cap allows consumers to eat only the amount of crisps they want, and then reseal the can.
Kellogg’s said the steel ends are securely fastened to the can to ensure freshness of the crisps and preventing damage to the crisps, and also minimises the amount of transport packaging needed to send them to the grocer.
“Consumers in the UK like their crisps unbroken,” said the spokesperson
“The snack can is recycled in Canada and many cities in the U.S. along with steel to recover the steel ends. The paper which has been recycled several times already is burned as energy along with the thin plastic and foil liner.”
Kellogg’s said it continues to work on improving the sustainability impact of all its packaging including the Pringles can. This includes looking at producing the packaging using less natural resources and how to improve recyclability.
It also claimed that over the last 10 years improvements in production efficiency of the Pringles can has achieved a double-digit percent reduction by weight – meaning the packs now use 23% less water, generate 17% less greenhouse gas emissions and 16% less waste.