Our journey to reach carbon neutrality​ 

Climate change is generally agreed as the issue requiring the highest attention from legislators, consumers and companies. It is set to have a profound impact on the complex infrastructure of the food and beverage industry, risking ro disrupt the entire value chain in which it operates.

This is why we are committed to a circular economy that also has a low-carbon focus: one that takes into account not just recycling and reuse, but also the carbon impact of manufacturing and, particularly, raw materials.

We've made significant progress on our climate goal that we set 10 years ago: capping our 2020 impact across our value chain at 2010 levels, regardless of business growth. Over the past decade, we saved 10 million tonnes of CO₂ emissions across the value chain.

After signing the UN Paris Pledge for Action in 2015, we became in 2017 the first company in the food packaging industry to have our climate impact reduction targets approved by the Science Based Targets initiative. In 2019 we were one of only 2% of companies securing a place on the global environmental impact non-profit CDP's prestigious 'A List'. And it was the fourth time we secured an A-score for climate action.

Using plant-based renewable raw materials, which take up carbon dioxide as they grow and are reused and recycled, is a significant part of our climate strategy. This is why back in 2015 we launched Tetra Rex® Plant-based, the world's first, and still only, fully renewable beverage carton. It is FSC™-certified and is entirely made of paperboard from responsibly managed forests and other controlled sources, and Bonsuco certified plant-based plastic. ​​​

Carbon Trust on a carton package

Switching from fossil plastics to plant-based plastics in making this package reduces its carbon emissions​ by as much as 31%, according to a calculation model certified by the Carbon Trust™. Nevertheless, there remains some residual carbon from the lifecycle impact of the Tetra Rex Plant-based package.

To remove it and achieve carbon​ neutrality, Tetra Pak has decided ​to run a pilot program in 2020 in partnership with the Carbon Trust™, becoming the first packaging company to enable customers to label their packages as CO₂​ Neutral according to the strict international PAS 2060 standard:

  • ​Only applicable to Tetra Rex Plant-based packages – with the highest share of renewable materials on the market
  • Only Gold Standard projects which ensures a high level of transparency and is supported by many NGOs including WWF
  • Selecting 'ex-post' carbon offsets ensure that the offset has actually happened (as opposed to 'ex-ante' offsets from example reforestation where the carbon reduction has not yet taken place)

For the pilot project we have selected two projects that fulfil the Gold Standard criteria:

  • ​The Ceara Renewable Energy Biomass bundle project in Brazil, as this delivers positive impact in terms of biomass utilisation in a region close to where we source plant-based polymers.
  • The Cambodia Water Filters project, which supports clean drinking water to rural communities and has been widely recognised by a range of stakeholders as being an impactful project delivering positive societal results.

To enable our customers to communicate the carbon neutral packages to their consumers and other stakeholders, we have worked with the Carbon Trust to certify that our calculations are correct and to ensure quality based on an independent assessment. Therefore, the packages that are carbon neutral according to these criteria carry the Carbon Neutral label by the Carbon Trust. 

As of May 2020, the first carbon neutral certified packages were launched in markets across Europe and Central Asia, starting with Spain and the Netherlands.​

The FSC license code for Tetra Pak is FSC™ C014047​​

The Carbon Trust has certified the carbon footprint of Tetra Pak’s Tetra Rex® Plant-based packages and certified this packaging as carbon neutral in compliance with the internationally recognised PAS2060 standard. Our qualifying explanatory statement (QES) includes the statement of our commitment and our certificate of achievement. The QES is available here.