Coca-Cola Philippines, together with Plastic Bank Philippines and Lighthouse Legacy Foundation, led over 200 volunteers to collect debris and marine waste at Julugan Fish Terminal in Tanza, Cavite, on September 16, as part of the International Coastal Cleanup (ICC).
Employees from the Coca-Cola Philippines system, together with waste collection members of its Ecosystem Impact Program with Plastic Bank Philippines and volunteers from ICC Philippines, Lighthouse Legacy Foundation, the Local Government of Tanza, Philippine Coast Guard Cavite Chapter, and Don Bosco School of Theology collected more than 1,000 kgs of waste to help address coastal waste issues in the area.
Zed Avecilla, President of Lighthouse Legacy Foundation, commended Coca-Cola Philippines for its longstanding commitment to responsible waste management, highlighting the company’s “World Without Waste” strategy that was initiated in 2018, well before the Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) Law was enacted in the country.
Avecilla also emphasized the impact of raising awareness on the importance of managing waste to prevent them from getting into Philippine waters- through events like ICC. “What we are achieving through these events is the creation of awareness on responsible waste management and educating Filipinos about the EPR Law. In a way, we are appealing to their emotions to help the environment,” he sai
The ICC is renowned as the world’s largest volunteer effort for ocean sanitation, with The Coca-Cola Company serving as a founding member of the Trash Free Seas Alliance since 1995. In partnership with its local bottling partners, the company is engaging employees, consumers, and communities in cleanups, providing resources, grants, and in-kind donations to help remove trash from beaches and waterways.
In the Philippines, Coca-Cola is doing its part to prevent marine debris through community-based initiatives like the Ecosystem Impact Program with Plastic Bank. This initiative helps build collection and recycling systems in communities to prevent plastic bottles from ending up in places where they should not be, while at the same time, empowering workers in the solid waste management sector.
Dhang Tecson, Global Director for Country Operations of Plastic Bank, thanked Coca-Cola Philippines for its annual coastal cleanup activity as well as the company’s invaluable contribution to advancing the circular economy of plastics in the Philippines. “Maganda ‘yung ginagawa ng Coca-Cola kasi hindi lang sa ating mga bahay nasisimulan ‘yung action, kundi pati sa ating komunidad (What Coca-Cola is doing is great because change doesn’t just start in our homes but also in our community),” Tecson said.
Coca-Cola bottles can have many lives
Coca-Cola Philippines President Tony del Rosario emphasized that coastal cleanup activity is part of the company’s wider commitment to help tackle plastic waste. “No one wants to see empty packaging end up where it doesn’t belong. Our World Without Waste program is an ambitious global sustainable packaging strategy that aims to help drive a circular economy for our packaging in the Philippines. Together with our partners, we are making progress with still much more to do,” he said.
The Coca-Cola Company’s World Without Waste global sustainable packaging strategy aims to make 100% of its packaging recyclable globally by 2025, use at least 50% recycled plastic in its packaging by 2030, help collect the equivalent of every can and bottle it sells by 2030, and bring people together to support a healthy, debris-free environment.
In line with this, Coca-Cola Philippines recently introduced new bottles made from 100% recycled PET plastic (rPET) for Coca-Cola Original (190ml and 390ml) and Wilkins Pure (500ml), in addition to Sprite 500ml introduced in 2019. The company also launched “May Ikabobote Pa” a consumer engagement initiative aimed at educating people about the actions they can take around recycling. Currently, Coca-Cola Philippines is expanding its network of over 2,800 recycling drop-off points across the country to make it easier for consumers to return their empty bottles.