Greene King pubs save record number of plastic from landfill

Greene King, the country’s leading pub company and brewer, has saved over 24,000 biscuit and sweets tubs, which is over three tonnes of plastic, from landfill, thanks to its Tub2Pub recycling scheme.

People have been dropping off their empty tubs at Greene King’s 1,700 managed pubs across the country throughout January as they cannot always be taken to local recycling centres. These tubs are typically made of the hard polypropylene plastic which many local authorities are unable to recycle so they are incinerated or landfilled.

Greene King partners with co-cre8 who specialise in designing systems to collect and recycle ‘hard-to-recycle’ materials. The plastic from the empty tubs is turned into granulated plastic which can then be sold to manufacturers, avoiding the use of virgin plastic.

The money raised from Tub2Pub is passed on to Greene King’s charity partner, Macmillan Cancer Support. With approximately eight pence from each tub, that’s over £2,000 going to Macmillan to help people living with cancer.

Vance Fairman-Smith, Greene King’s supply chain director, said, “As a company we are working hard to reduce waste from our pubs and breweries and this Tub2Pub project shows we can help customers reduce waste from their homes too.

'Millions of these confectionary and biscuit tubs are sold, particularly over Christmas, so January is an ideal month to use our pubs as drop off recycling points. It stops the tubs going to landfill and our charity partner, Macmillan, receives the money from the sale of the recycled plastic. Landfill’s loss is the environment’s and charity’s gain.”

This is the second year the Tub2Pub scheme has been running.

Peter Goodwin, managing director and co-founder of co-cre8, said, “We are delighted with the response this year. It definitely shows people have a real appetite for recycling these tubs which would otherwise end up in landfill.

'A pub is at the centre of the community and there is a real collective spirit from customers to back this type of recycling opportunity. It is a prime time to collect the tubs after Christmas.

'Our partnership with Greene King offers a network of pubs where tubs can be collected. It’s a success because it’s simple, guarantees recycling in the UK and there is a charitable benefit too.”