As part of Arrowhead® Brand 100% Mountain Spring Water’s commitment to environmental stewardship in California, the company today announced it will expand its use of recycled content to many of its most popular sized bottles by the end of 2016. This will increase Arrowhead's use of recycled content by 38% and will ensure that most of its bottle sizes contain up to 50% rPET (recycled polyethylene terephthalate).
“Arrowhead has been part of California history for more than a century. We are continuously evolving our products to have the smallest environmental footprint possible. Thanks to California’s strong commitment to recycling, there is high quality rPET available enabling us to increase our use of recycled material,” says Tim Brown, CEO and president of Nestlé Waters North America, which operates the Arrowhead brand.
Today’s announcement is an extension of the brand’s ongoing efforts to support recycling in California. While most plastic bottles are made out of material called polyethylene terephthalate (PET), Arrowhead has focused on introducing bottles made from recycled PET (rPET) and began using it in its ½-liter bottles three years ago.
“Using recycled content, plastic products and other materials are converted back into new bottles,” said Dave Thorpe, Supply Chain Director for Nestlé Waters’ Arrowhead brand. “In this ‘closed loop’ model, recycled packaging can be reused indefinitely and can help foster a circular economy that prioritizes sustainability.”
Arrowhead is partnering with Los Angeles-based CarbonLITE Industries LLC, one of the largest producers of food-grade, post-consumer recycled PET in the world, to provide the rPET material used in its bottles. The recycled materials are primarily collected in California.
”California’s recycling program leads the nation, recovering billions of plastic containers each year. By reusing these materials, Arrowhead will save 20,000 tons of carbon dioxide from production annually. That’s a significant reduction in greenhouse gases and a model for other packaging companies,” says Leon Farahnik founder and CEO of CarbonLITE.
Promoting Recycling and Supporting Trash Free Waterways
Recycling is a critical first step in the implementation of rPET, especially as plastic recycling is one of the most effective ways to reduce landfill waste, conserve natural resources, and control the environmental impact of sourcing new materials.
The company has established local partnerships with groups that are encouraging communities to connect with their waterways and create shared value.
In California, Arrowhead has partnered with Inland Empire Waterkeeper to support “Crest to Coast” restoration efforts for the last several years. With this initiative, Arrowhead employees are joining with Waterkeeper and community volunteers to implement the California Water Board's Rapid Trash Assessment protocol, which is designed to help reduce the amount of litter found within one of Southern California’s most important watersheds. The Santa Ana River watershed encompasses more than 3,000 square miles of San Bernardino, Riverside and Orange Counties, and a small portion of Los Angeles County. The Santa Ana River flows approximately 110 miles from the San Bernardino Mountains to Huntington Beach, where it empties into the Pacific Ocean.
This program will allow Waterkeeper to evaluate the types of litter found at restoration sites and begin management strategies by working with local companies, agencies, and other stakeholders on ways to reduce pollution and by working with schools to directly inform young people on how they can become better environmental stewards.