Board of The Consumer Goods Forum Issues Statement Acknowledging Need for Industry to Help Reduce Plastic Waste; Endorses Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s New Plastics Economy Global Commitment Vision of a Circular Economy Where No Plastic Ends Up as Waste

PARIS, 29th October 2018 – The Board of Directors of The Consumer Goods Forum (CGF) has today issued a statement calling for the consumer goods industry to play a leading role in eliminating plastic waste on land and sea and endorses the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s New Plastics Economy vision. The statement was issued ahead of the Our Ocean Conference taking place in Bali, Indonesia this week, where Emmanuel Faber, Danone Chairman & CEO and CGF Board member, will emphasise the important role industry can and should play to address plastic waste. The full statement is below:

“As the Board of The Consumer Goods Forum, we recognise the pressing need for our industry to play a leading role in tackling the issue of plastic waste. We are committed to implementing pre-competitive, collaborative actions with the aim of eliminating plastic waste on land and sea.

“We recognise that the plastic waste challenge will only be solved by global collaboration between companies, national and local governments, multi-national organisations, the recycling industry and consumers. Consequently, the Board of The Consumer Goods Forum (CGF) endorses the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s New Plastics Economy vision of a circular economy where no plastic ends up as waste.

“Several members of the CGF are already advancing efforts that are consistent with the goals and objectives of the New Plastics Economy, including efforts to reduce problematic or unnecessary packaging and increase use of packaging that is recyclable or reusable. To complement the efforts of individual member companies, the CGF will identify specific areas where we can work collaboratively and pre-competitively to advance a circular economy for plastic packaging. Initial focus areas will include optimising packaging design, working with others to enable recycling and reuse systems, and inspiring consumer engagement”.

Steve Rowe, Chief Executive of Marks and Spencer, and Board Co-Sponsor of the CGF’s sustainability group, said, “Business has to find a new approach to plastic and make it easy for consumers to use less and recycle more. The CGF is committed to being at the forefront of this change as we reduce the amount of plastic in use, simplify the materials we use, improve recycling rates and shift to new, innovative ways of doing business”.

Ian Cook, Chairman and CEO of Colgate-Palmolive, and Co-Chair of the CGF Board, said, "The challenge of plastic waste is real and urgent, and best addressed through specific actions that CGF companies can take individually and collectively in partnership with governments, NGOs and the recycling industry. We're committed to doing our part to ensure the plastic we need is safely and economically, reused, recycled or composted".

Emmanuel Faber, Chairman and CEO of Danone, and CGF Board member, said, "The CGF's support shows the consumer goods industry is stepping up efforts to help tackle the plastic packaging challenge. Together, manufacturers and retailers can contribute to delivering on the ambition to eliminate waste and build a circular economy of plastics. I look forward to more members of the CGF signing the New Plastics Economy Global Commitment, and to working with them to drive systemic change".

Mark Schneider, Chief Executive Officer of Nestlé S.A., and CGF Board member, said, “I am proud that Nestlé is amongst the signatories of the New Plastics Economy Global Commitment. It represents a powerful framework to drive collective action. Every effort counts”.

Peter Freedman, Managing Director of The Consumer Goods Forum, said, “It is clear that the daunting challenge of plastic waste can only be addressed if we all work together – companies, governments, communities and consumers around the world. The CGF was created to drive exactly this sort of collaboration at scale. Specifically, our members are committed to working together in the three arenas where we think the industry can make a unique contribution – packaging design, consumer engagement and recycling systems. We look forward to working also with the other key stakeholders who play leading roles in these arenas and who share our long-term aim to eliminate plastic waste on land and sea”.
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About The Consumer Goods Forum
The Consumer Goods Forum (“CGF”) is a global, parity-based industry network that is driven by its members to encourage the global adoption of practices and standards that serves the consumer goods industry worldwide. It brings together the CEOs and senior management of some 400 retailers, manufacturers, service providers, and other stakeholders across 70 countries, and it reflects the diversity of the industry in geography, size, product category and format. Its member companies have combined sales of EUR 3.5 trillion and directly employ nearly 10 million people, with a further 90 million related jobs estimated along the value chain. It is governed by its Board of Directors, which comprises more than 50 manufacturer and retailer CEOs. For more information, please visit: www.theconsumergoodsforum.com.

Ignacio Gavilan
Director, Environmental Sustainability
The Consumer Goods Forum
environmental@theconsumergoodsforum.com

Lee Green
Director, Communications
The Consumer Goods Forum
l.green@theconsumergoodsforum.com

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