Nestlé Moves to Tackle Plastic Pollution in Ethiopia

ADDIS ABEBA – Nestlé has partnered with local sustainability consultant TS Environment to set up a plastics waste recovery program in Ethiopia, its regional office said on Thursday.

The objective of the program is to achieve plastic neutrality within the next 12 months. This means Nestlé has collected and co-processed the equivalent amount of plastic as contained in the products sold and prevented the further flow of plastic into landfills.

By the end of 2020, an estimated 40 tons of plastic waste would have been collected, sorted and recycled or incinerated, according to officials of Nestlé.  

“Plastic waste is one of the biggest sustainability issues the world is facing today. Tackling it requires a collective approach. We are committed to finding improved solutions to reduce, re-use and recycle plastic and this partnership will help us to achieve our goal,” said Wossenyeleh Shiferaw, Nestlé Horn of Africa Cluster Manager.

The program is expected to accelerate the process of collecting, recycling and sustainable disposal of plastic waste in Ethiopia.

“Leveraging on TS Environment’s technology and expertise, we will start with a pilot plastic waste recovery system targeting specific locations across Addis Ababa, with the intention of scaling this up in the near future,” Shiferaw added. 

Once the plastic waste is collected, it will be sorted, weighed and thereafter the recyclable plastic will be processed to produce other plastic products, while the non-recyclable plastic waste will be incinerated to release energy via an environmentally friendly process. 

Nestlé’s latest initiative will also create income-generating opportunities throughout the value chain, ranging from local residents and the youth will benefit from the collection, sorting, weighing to transportation services. 

As the world’s largest food and beverage company, Nestlé said it is committed to taking a leadership role in tackling the plastic waste challenge. 

In 2018, the company made a global commitment to make 100% of its packaging, recyclable or reusable by 2025.