Survey highlights consumer demand for sustainable packaging

Recent research shows that today’s environmentally conscious shoppers expect more from packaging, especially when it comes to their beverage choices. It is no longer enough for packaging to only protect the product, be convenient and visually appealing, consumers are increasingly judging brands on their environmental credentials too.

According to Ball Corporation’s 2019 Consumer Survey, 73% of the respondents said they would choose environmentally friendly containers if they had a choice. 79% of the survey, which polled the key markets of Brazil, Spain, UK and the US, felt that companies should already be adopting environmentally responsible packaging.

In a further boost for sustainable solutions, 50% of the respondents said they would pay more for environmentally friendly packaging. And 78% of consumers expect all beverage brands to use environmentally friendly containers within the next five years.

As sustainability concerns continue to drive consumer shopping behavior across all categories, aluminum cans are leading the way for the beverage industry. For manufacturers, aluminum cans also provide brand positioning and potential growth opportunities. According to a Ball Customer Survey, also carried out in 2019, 73% of beverage makers agree that companies will look outdated if they do not have the most sustainable beverage containers within five years.

When it comes to sustainability, it is important to understand the true environmental credentials of aluminum beverage cans, and its high recycling rates across Europe – currently at 74.5%, with 90% of aluminum collected in Europe recycled there too. In Brazil, the recycling rate for aluminum cans is 98%.

Aluminum is a true circular economy material, as cans may be recycled forever with no loss of quality. The can is the most recycled beverage container in the world, with 75% of aluminum ever produced still in use today. The process is simple too – collect, sort and melt – and all cans can be recycled over and over again, regardless of colour, format, size or design.

“Consumers want packaging solutions that they can trust will be actually recycled and used in new high-quality products – ideally in a never-ending cycle. With aluminum beverage can recycling at 74.5% and carried out in Europe, the can is a true recycling champion,” said Claudia Bierth, European sustainability manager, Ball Beverage Packaging Europe.

“Aluminium loses little material during the recycling process, retaining its quality every time it’s processed and using 95% less energy than primary production, making the can a poster child for the circular economy.”

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