Press release of the Ministry of the Environment, Finnish Food and Drink Industries’ Federation, Finnish Hospitality Association, Finnish Grocery Trade Association and Finnish Packaging Association
Companies commit to reducing use of single-use plastic portion packs
An adequate number of companies have made the committed to the Green Deal agreement on single-use plastic portion packs. This year, companies will define ambitious reduction targets for their own operations. In Finland further measures are needed to achieve the recycling targets set in the EU for plastic packaging waste.
“It is important that companies in the key sectors commit to reducing the consumption of plastics. By working together to reduce the consumption of plastic packaging, we can reduce the harmful environmental impacts of plastic products,” says Salla Koivusalo, Senior Specialist at the Ministry of the Environment.
Reducing plastic waste requires concrete measures that take into account the entire life cycle of plastics.
“We must find ways to reduce the environmental impact of packaged foods, but the environmental impact of packaged products and packaging must always be considered as a whole,” says CEO Antro Säilä from the Finnish Packaging Association.
An adequate number of companies have made the committed to the Green Deal agreement on single-use plastic portion packs
“We are very pleased that, with this cooperation, we have managed to create a package from which companies can choose the means that are the best suited for their operations and that, finally, the most important food sector companies boldly joined the agreement with their own commitments,” says Satumaija Levón, Director of Sustainability at the Finnish Food and Drink Industries’ Federation.
Sector-specific coverage targets of the agreement have been reached. Of the most significant member companies of the Finnish Food and Drink Industries’ Federation, at least two thirds have made the commitment to the voluntary agreement. At least one third of the companies in the hospitality sector with turnover from restaurant and café operations have made the commitment. All member companies of the Finnish Grocery Trade Association have also joined the agreement, and so have the most important packaging companies that are members of the Finnish Packaging Association. The targets for the coverage of the agreement are based on a preliminary study on the environmental impacts of plastic products in different sectors, conducted by VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland.
Work will continue by setting quantitative targets
During 2024 the companies that have made the commitment will define ambitious reduction targets for their own operations, to be reached by the end of 2026. Both the Finnish Grocery Trade Association and the Finnish Hospitality Association stress the important role of sharing information.
“The introduction of reusable take-away packages in grocery stores offers a good opportunity to reduce the use of single-use portion packs. Based on practical experiments we can set concrete reduction targets as companies in the retail sector get more information on efficient operating models for the reuse and environmental impacts of packaging and, above all, on the customers' willingness to change their purchasing behaviour,” says Director Ilkka Nieminen from the Finnish Grocery Trade Association.
“At first a large number of big companies in the hospitality sector joined the voluntary agreement. Our aim is to find and develop effective solutions to reduce the use of single-use plastic containers. We will share information on good practices with all our member companies. The companies also encourage consumers to make choices that reduce the use of plastics,” says Veli-Matti Aittoniemi, Deputy Chief Executive at the Finnish Hospitality Association.
Aim to reduce harm caused by plastics both in EU and internationally
Besides the Green Deal agreement on single-use plastic portion packs, voluntary agreements aimed to reduce the use of plastics have been concluded concerning plastic carrier bags and use of plastics in construction. The measures of the Plastics Roadmap also promote the circular economy of plastics throughout the value chain.
The Green Deal agreement on single-use plastic portion pack was concluded between the Ministry of the Environment and the Finnish Food and Drink Industries’ Federation, Finnish Hospitality Association, Finnish Grocery Trade Association and Finnish Packaging Association. The voluntary agreement seeks effective means and operating models for reducing single-use plastic packaging. The agreement is based on the EU Directive that requires Member States to reduce the use of single-use plastic portion packs.
tel. +358 295 250 289
Finnish Food and Drink Industries’ Federation
tel. +358 40 752 8537
Deputy Chief Executive
Finnish Hospitality Association
tel. +358 40 736 7705
Finnish Grocery Trade Association
tel. +358 9 1728 6112
Finnish Packaging Association
tel. +358 40 589 1891