A new report outlines the importance of decarbonizing UK food systems ahead of net zero future
Findings published by Tetra Pak shows that more than a third (36 percent) of senior decision-makers in the food and beverage industry think sustainable packaging and decarbonization is important.
However, significantly, 41 percent are hindered by ongoing disruption to supply chains. This has created a catch-22 for industry leaders.
Raw materials shortages and price increases are key factors hindering efforts to adopt decarbonization practices across the industry.
The research also highlights growing consumer support for companies committing to lowering their carbon footprint.
For instance, 64 percent value efforts made to reduce waste when disposing of a carton. This recyclability is a staple example of Tetra Pak’s decarbonization mission.
While over half (60 percent) are concerned about the impact food and drink packaging has on waste management.
No single solution to decarbonization
Alex Henriksen, Managing Director for North Europe at Tetra Pak, said: “The food and beverage industry faces an unprecedented set of evolving challenges in the year ahead.
“It is therefore encouraging to see that despite such pressures, businesses and consumers alike remain determined to focus on the decarbonization of food systems.
“Our research demonstrates that consumers are placing increased importance on sustainable packaging and want to understand how the food and beverage sector is helping to mitigate the effects of climate change.
“It is essential that decisive action is taken to ensure ambitions are met, and that the necessary support is put in place to achieve a circular economy.
“No single solution will lead to the decarbonization of our food systems today, but through collaboration across the UK Government and industry, and with the consumer at the heart of decision making, finding a range of practical and effective solutions will be far simpler.”
The news that global food and energy supply chains are facing mounting pressure is not new. But the report serves to highlight that businesses and consumers have not lost sight of the UK’s wider decarbonization plan.
“At Tetra Pak,” Adam Henriksen added, “through continued innovation, we have created a reality of not only being able to replace or reduce our consumption of foods which have higher carbon impacts, but also being able to package these in a way that embraces renewable, low carbon materials.
“We must pursue these opportunities with accelerated determination to make the vital gains that our planet needs.
“We remain committed to helping our customers achieve their sustainability goals, and look forward to continuing to work together with governments and industry to drive meaningful change and pursue a more sustainable future.”