Coca-Cola starts attaching caps to bottles

Coke bottle with attached bottle cap

Coca-Cola Great Britain is introducing new, attached caps to its plastic bottles, making it easier to recycle the entire package and ensure no cap gets left behind.

Production has already started at Coca-Cola Europacific Partners’ site in East Kilbride, meaning consumers in Scotland will be among the first to see new caps attached to 1.5-litre bottles of Fanta, Coca-Cola Zero Sugar and Diet Coke. The switch is set to be completed for all plastic bottles across Coca-Cola GB’s range of brands by early 2024.

All of Coca-Cola’s bottles, including the caps, have been 100% recyclable for many years but not all are being recycled. Bottle caps are often discarded and littered. The new design means that the cap stays connected to the bottle after opening, so the whole plastic bottle and attached cap can be recycled together.

Coca-Cola is the first major soft drinks company to announce the switch across its entire range in Great Britain. Last year CCEP announced that it had reached its target of using 100% recycled plastic – excluding caps and labels – in all its 500ml or smaller bottles sold in Great Britain ahead of schedule, helping to save around 29,000 tonnes of plastic per year.

The move also follows CCEP’s transition to Shrink to Board pack, alongside light-weighting of its aluminium cans, which are now 22% lighter than two years ago.

Commenting on the new caps, Stephen Moorhouse, General Manager at CCEP GB, said: “The move is just one of the steps we’re taking as part of our This is Forward sustainability action plan, which targets six key social and environmental areas where the business has a significant impact and forms a key element of our 2040 net zero target.

“We are proud to be leading the industry in Great Britain, with production of the new attached caps to our plastic bottles first taking place right here in East Kilbride, following £32m in investment into the site since 2017.”