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Coca-Cola Great Britain Pilots Reverse Vending Machines

reverse vending machines
(Photo Credit: Coca-Cola Great Britain)

Coca-Cola Great Britain launched a trial initiative with Merlin Entertainments to install reverse vending machines at four attraction sites this summer. Each bottle recycled in the machines provides a 50%-off voucher for one of the UK-based company’s amusement park locations.

Research that the company conducted found that 64% of Brits would recycle more on-the-go if they were rewarded instantly for their actions. The reverse vending machines were designed in response, and they offer discounts on entry to 30 participating Merlin attractions that include Alton Towers Resort, Thorpe Park, Chessington World of Adventures, and Legoland Windsor.

The pilot began this week and will go through August 31, 2018, the company says.

“We hope to remind people how valuable their empty plastic bottle is,” said Jon Woods, general manager of Coca-Cola Great Britain. “All of our bottles can be recycled and we want to get as many of them back as possible so they can be turned into new bottles and not end up as litter.”

Reverse vending machines have also appeared stateside. Coca-Cola installed two stations in Seattle for the recent 2018 Special Olympics USA Games. Each machine accepted PET bottles and aluminum cans, and triggered a 5-cent donation to Special Olympics Washington.

In February, the Coca-Cola Company started an initiative to collect and recycle the equivalent of every bottle or can it sells globally by 2030. The World Without Waste plan focuses on the full packaging lifecycle.

Earlier this month, Coca-Cola set a target of doubling the amount of recycled plastic in all of its bottles in Great Britain, moving all of the company’s brands from 25% to 50% recycled plastic packaging by 2020.

Coca-Cola GB inked a deal with the recycled plastic manufacturer Clean Tech to purchase material for their packaging. After bottles have been recovered and recycled, they can return to shop shelves as part of new packs in as soon as six weeks, according to the drink brand.

The company says that Coca-Cola Great Britain is currently the largest user of recycled plastic in the UK food and drink industry.

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