Yes. In a world where consumption habits evolve towards consumption on-the-go, bottled water is more and more useful to meet the hydration needs of a growing number of consumers who, with no other choice, would go towards the consumption of other packaged beverages such as fizzy drinks.
For centuries, transportation and storage of water have been one of the main concerns of humankind. First carried in animal skin asks, then earthenware & stoneware jars, glass bottles before being packed in plastic, water bottles followed the process of industrialisation.
The introduction of plastic was a true revolution. A revolution because plastic was a lot less heavy and not fragile like glass (and the most used container at this time) thus reducing the weight for transported materials and because plastic is cheaper thus decreasing and improving the purchase price of the product.
Plastic bottles actively contributed to the development of the bottled water category as this new packaging brought huge demands from consumers who could consume their favourite product in any and all circumstances.
In 1992, the first bottle in PET (polyethylene terephthalate) was introduced and once again, this evolution was a revolution as PET is more solid (bottle can be lightweight), more flexible (non-breakable) and on top of it, entirely recyclable.
PET is today the number one material used by the bottled water industry. Almost half a century was needed to go from glass to PVC and a quarter of a century from PVC to PET. Since then, the whole industry has been actively working on finding the new generation packaging combining PET benefits and new benefits on durability such as biodegradability.
If a few solutions exist today, they are not reaching the reliability expected yet and that is the reason why PET is still the most used solution in the industry.
Plastic packaging plays an important role in ensuring that our foods and beverages are safe, and in reducing food loss and waste. Before making changes, we need to consider any alternatives with care.
We aim to use packaging with the lowest possible environmental impact. In every country where Nestlé operates, we must comply with food regulations and standards, which often dictate the types of material we can use to package our products.
New technologies and innovations bring a wider choice of packaging materials and more environmentally friendly formats. We recognize this, and we’re committed to working with our partners and industry associations to explore new packaging solutions – to reduce plastic usage, facilitate recycling and develop new approaches to eliminating plastic waste.