Lahore (Muhammad Yasir) In the presence of Mr. Malik Amin Aslam, Prime Minister’s special assistant on Climate Change unveiled a first of its kind Reverse Vending Machine (RVM) for plastics at the Jinnah Super Market, Islamabad. The machine makes it convenient and rewarding for people to recycle on the go. Plastic bottles of any brand can be used in the machine. The RVM itself is like a vending machine in reverse. Consumers press the start button on a touch screen, and the RVM opens up a slot to receive the plastic bottle. Once deposited, the RVM compresses the PET so that it is ready for the next steps of recycling.
The RVM is part of the company’s larger strategy and intent to take meaningful steps towards tackling the issue of plastic waste. Earlier this year, PepsiCo announced the country’s largest plastics collection and recycling project under the Prime Minister’s Clean Green Pakistan program. Making steady progress towards this goal the company announced more than doubling its existing targets for plastic collection and recycling. PepsiCo Pakistan will scale up its existing 4750 tons plastics collection program by adding another 5500 tons making a total of 10,250 tons of plastics to be collected and recycled in 2021. The program is implemented by PepsiCo’s partner Green Earth Recycling and its progress is being monitored by WWF-Pakistan. Both these important announcements come in the buildup to the world environment day which is being proudly hosted by Pakistan this year.
Prime Minister’s special assistant on Climate Change Mr. Malik Amin Aslam commented, ‘’ All of us will have to work together to truly address the plastic issue. The RVM machine is a way of making that connection with the public and encouraging them to recycle. I’d like congratulate PepsiCo on its continued efforts on the plastic agenda, I am particularly happy to see the progress on its plastics collection and recycling program’.
Mr. Furqan Ahmed Syed, PepsiCo CEO Pakistan and Afghanistan commented that ‘ The RVM is part of our multi-pronged strategy to invest to increase recycling rates in key markets through campaigns that encourage consumers to recycle and partnerships to increase and improve recycling infrastructure on the whole. We have already launched a collection program for 4750 tons of plastic earlier this year. We are today more than doubling this target and increasing the total collection to 10,250 tons. This will continue to be the largest plastic waste collection program in the country.’’
Packaging waste is an urgent global problem. While plastic is a lightweight and highly effective packaging material that helps to keep food safe, accessible, and affordable, PepsiCo estimates that only 14% of what is used is effectively recycled. This will require fundamental changes in how packaging is made and disposed of, along with rethinking its forms and functions.
PepsiCo envisions a world where plastics need never become waste. The company shares concern over the growing threat that packaging waste poses to communities and the environment. As a global leader in food and beverages, it believes it has an important role to play in making sustainable packaging a reality.