Reviewing Single Use Plastic at Lakeland Dairies

21st August 2018

Lakeland Dairies, a major dairy processing cooperative based in Ireland with a turnover of over 700 million euros, had been asked by their customers to investigate alternatives to their single use plastic packaging, including plastic straws, for their milk products. They commissioned us to give them a better understanding of the upcoming legislation around single use plastics, and to look at possible alternatives to their current packaging

Our team carried out a review of the packaging, drawing from both our policy work with the European Commission and national governments and our technical packaging and waste management expertise. We advised on likely packaging bans and restrictions, as well as on the feasible and environmentally preferable options that they should consider.

The project:

  • Reviewed current use of single use milk portion packaging and plastic straws;
  • Established the likely regulatory constraints in the short to medium terms;
  • Identified potential material substitutions;
  • Examined the issues around use of bio-degradable polymers;
  • Investigated means to improve recyclability, for example through use of mono-material items; and,
  • Investigated the use of recycled content.

Lakeland Dairies’ Ed Wright said:

“As a dairy company with a range of products and clients, we are faced with a variety of challenges around reducing our use of single use plastics. Eunomia provided us with a really useful and well-considered review in short timescales to help guide our strategic approach and cut through the complexity.”

Project Director, Mark Hilton, said:

“It’s important that businesses think about the impact the packaging they choose has in the long term, especially if it’s unlikely to be recycled or reused. We’ve provided Lakeland Dairies with a range of options to make their packaging more environmentally sustainable and future proof in terms of future regulatory constraints and consumer demands.”

The company are now considering their options for future packaging changes.