The beer brewer Carlsberg has come up with the worlds first paper beer bottle. The bottle is part of Carlsberg’s “Together Towards Zero” initiative, which is their commitment towards zero carbon emissions. This includes a goal of a 30% reduction in their carbon footprint.
The American brewer has revealed two prototypes for its green fibre bottle, both of which are made from sustainably sourced wood fibres. They are both made in such a way that they are able to hold beer. Obviously being made from paper they need to be able to actually hold the liquid which is where the magic begins. Anyone can make a beer bottle or beer mug out of paper but will it hold? That is the billion dollar question. Traditionally beer mugs and beer bottles are made from glass because it is a good container. Also the beer tastes good consumer out of glass. You can drink beer out of a plastic bottle or plastic beer mug, but it doesn’t taste very good.
Another interesting development from Carlsberg is that From Spring 2020, cans of their Tennent’s lager will be packaged in cardboard rather than plastic, with plastic rings and shrink-wrap phased out. This will result in 150 tonnes less plastic produced per year. Tennent’s has become the first brewer to join The UK Plastics Pact, which intends to ban single-use plastic used in packaging by 2021.
Whilst companies will try to move away from glass as a material for bottles and mugs, I believe that what they should be working on is getting away from plastic. Plastic tends to be a single use material whereas glass can be used multiple times. Especially in Europe where people pay a deposit for their bottles, they tend to be reused. The same goes with beer mugs. When you drink from one at the pub you take it back, they wash it, and then use it again. With plastic or even paper cups and mugs it is a single use and then into the rubbish bin.