A New Study Shows that Plastic Waste from Beverages and Food is a Big Contributor in Plastic Pollution

A study published in journal Science Advances analyzed the data that was taken from different litter surveys between 2018 to 2022 in 84 countries. These data sets were collected from different volunteers who picked 1.8 million plastic from parks, beaches, roads and other public places around the world. By knowing this data, researchers did a rough estimation about how much plastic waste is being produced by plastic companies all over the world.

According to the findings, Coca-Cola Company is the biggest source of plastic waste and makes 11% of all the plastic waste in the world. Next comes PepsiCo with 5% plastic waste followed by Nestle and Danone which contributed to 3% each of the total plastic waste. Altria, which is the biggest producer of tobacco, cigarettes and products related to these things produce 2% of the total plastic waste in the world. These big five companies make 24% of the total plastic waste. 56 companies make half of plastic waste which is a concerning world’s litter problem.

When the volunteers were picking plastic waste, most of it didn’t have any brand or company name. The researchers say that this means that the percentage of plastic waste from these big five companies is probably higher than their estimation. The researchers also want relevant authorities to take preventive measures to decrease the plastic waste.

The biggest reason for global plastic waste is food and beverages. The single-use packaging is one of the biggest reasons for plastic pollution. The candy wrapper or plastic bottle you throw away immediately contributes to more plastic pollution than a detergent bottle being used for months before getting thrown away.

The researchers said that the solution to this plastic pollution is to decrease the plastic production. Brand managers and policy makers should do something to reduce plastic pollution that is very harmful for the environment.

Image: DIW-Aigen

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