KENYA – In a bid to support environmental conservation, edible oil manufacturers Bidco Africa Ltd and Bidcoro Africa Limited are working on a program to eliminate the usage of some plastic bottles within their value chain.

The strategy aims to eliminate unnecessary plastics and at the same time improve recyclability, says Bidco Africa’s Group Director, Chris Diaz.

He said the program is in line with this year’s World Environment Day which focuses on offering solutions to plastic pollution to effectively conserve the environment.

Speaking at Mang’u High School in Kiambu County, Diaz said they are working on eliminating top seals on water products as well as introducing a new look eco-friendly water bottle and that gradually, they will eliminate the unnecessary plastics in their value chain.

“Bidco’s Circular Economy focuses on the elimination of top seals on water products to the new look Planet Aqua water bottle and adopting new lightweight packaging technology,” Diaz said.

Bidcoro’s Chief Operating Officer Mads Burmester highlighted the need for recycling plastic bottles to effectively conserve the environment.

He explained that out of the 400 million tonnes of plastic that is produced annually with 40% of that being single-use, less than 10% of that is recycled.

He said the statistics show that most of the plastic bottles produced are not recycled and end up making the environment look dirty.

“The problem is that we don’t recycle the plastic bottles and we need to start now, and this will help in building a pollution-free planet,” said Mads.

He cited the company’s SunTop brand that launched juice in a 250 ml tetra pack with a paper straw in their journey to eliminate plastics.

This comes as the country is gearing at beating plastic pollution with the launch of design guidelines for the recyclability of plastic packaging.

Guidelines have been developed to ensure that 100 percent of plastic packaging is reusable or recyclable in the country by 2030.

The guidelines have been reviewed by the National Environment Management Authority (NEMA) and approved by all 40 official Members and Supporters of the Pact including plastic packaging manufacturers, importers, and exporters, prominent FMCG brands, committed small and medium businesses, informal waste pickers’ associations and recyclers, influential industry associations, environmental NGOs, and advocacy groups/civil society.

The unregulated dumping and plastics packaging ending up in landfills pose a critical and often immediate threat to countless endangered species, ecosystems and dependent socio-economic systems all over the country.

For all the latest grains industry news from Africa, the Middle East and the World, subscribe to our weekly NEWSLETTERS, follow us on LinkedIn and subscribe to our YouTube channel