The recently formed group that compromises 11 agricultural processing and food businesses in Ireland – Plastics Action Alliance – has set out its targets that aim to “significantly reduce” the use of plastic packaging across their operations.

Formed at the end of 2018, the Plastics Action Alliance is a collaboration that represents significant but different elements of the agri-food sector, according to a statement from the group.

Some of the Irish agri-food businesses include:
  • ABP (beef);
  • Aurivo (dairy);
  • Manor Farm (poultry);
  • Irish Country Meats (lamb);
  • Rosderra (pork);
  • Keelings (fruit);
  • Monaghan Mushrooms (mushrooms);
  • Country Crest / Ballymaguire Foods (vegetables and prepared meals);
  • Nature’s Best (salads);
  • C&D Foods (petfood);
  • Bandon Co-Op (dairy).

The objectives for members of the Plastics Action Alliance include making a commitment to reduce both the use and quantity of plastic packaging without compromising on quality, shelf life and consumer experience.

Businesses involved in the alliance have also committed to eliminating unnecessary single-use plastics from everyday activities, and to no longer use PVC in packaging where viable alternatives exist by the end of 2020.

Other key objectives include:
  • Ensuring a 30% average recycled content across all plastic packaging by the end of 2025;
  • Redesigning packaging to reduce the amount of plastic in each pack;
  • Using packaging that will be reusable, recyclable or compostable by 2025;
  • Ensuring that no packaging waste from any participant site will go to landfill by the end of 2020.

Independent chairman of the Plastics Action Alliance Aidan Cotter said: “It is important to demonstrate that we have a real and binding commitment to the reduction of the use of plastic across our member companies.

The objectives we have set are a tangible demonstration that the alliance intends to take meaningful action with the introduction of further sustainable processes across their businesses.

Concluding, Cotter said: “Some of the objectives we have set are ambitious, but we are confident that they will be met.”