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New Tennent’s can is first in UK to put sustainability caution on packaging

While it is common to see ‘drink responsibly’ on alcoholic products, Scotland’s Tennent’s Lager, has created a new can with a prominent ‘enjoy sustainably’ message on its packaging.

Revealed during COP26, Tennent’s is committing to add a ‘Please Enjoy Sustainably’ message across all its canned packaging in a bid to encourage recycling ahead of the introduction of Scotland’s deposit return scheme.

A can of Tennent’s, when recycled, can be back on shelf within 60 days. While recycling logos are widely carried on canned products, their size and position mean they are easily missed or ignored. It is hoped the more direct and obvious call to action on the 120 million cans the brewery fills on average every year, will help to change the recycling habits of drinkers. Scotland is targeted to recycle 70% of household waste by 2025 but the most recent figures show recycling rates dropped in 2018 to 44.7%, down from the 45.5% rate achieved in 2016.

Earlier this year, Tennent’s officially moved out of single use consumer plastic, removing 150 tonnes from the environment annually, and now the brewer will be rolling out the new eco conscious can, which could be on-shelf as early as January 2022.

Cameron Matthews, senior brand manager, said: ‘Being a responsible alcohol brand in 2021 means more than advocating moderate consumption – it means doing all you can to be environmentally positive too. Within our business, we are committed to leading the way when it comes to sustainability – but there is a really important role for the public to play too. We wanted to use our reach to help keep the issue – and the ways that we can work together – front of mind.

‘When recycled, aluminium can be back on shelf within 60 days, which is a fantastic example of the circular economy in action – with impact on litter and CO2 emissions. It may seem like such a simple action, but by recycling cans, everyone can make a big difference.’

Despite the impact of the pandemic, which saw large parts of the hospitality sector closed or restricted in operation, Tennent’s pledge in 2019 to invest £14 million in its environmental initiatives was committed and delivered upon. Highlights include the installation of an anaerobic digestion plant (2019), the largest carbon capture facility in Scotland (2020), and a £7 million investment in packaging equipment to introduce cardboard outers for all canned products (2021), among other initiatives.


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