Beach Clean-Ups Transform Precious Coastal Ecology

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South Africa 30 September 2021 – KwaZulu-Natal and Eastern Cape Beaches received a much-needed restoration when volunteers embarked on an annual widescale coastal clean-up sponsored by Coca-Cola Beverages South Africa (CCBSA) in partnership with local departments and community members.

The clean-ups form part of The Coca-Cola Company’s World Without Waste Vision, aimed at collecting at least 100% of the recyclable polyethylene terephthalate (PET) and aluminium cans in the environment by 2030.

“As one of the world’s largest users of packaging material, and particularly PET plastic, CCBSA has recognised the need to lead the collection of waste through a comprehensive strategy,” says Nolundi Mzimba, Coastal Region Public Affairs Manager at CCBSA. “Annual community clean-ups and awareness drives form a vital element of this strategy, and this year, we made sure that all hygiene protocols were observed and strictly adhered to, keeping all volunteers safe. Even under strict lockdown restrictions, we have managed to collect 700 large bags of recyclable materials in all three clean-ups,” she says.

In 2018, The Coca-Cola Company launched the World Without Waste Vision 2030 Global Initiative. The initiative aims to rethink how bottles are designed, collected, recycled, and repurposed. While it uses many types of packaging, including glass bottles, aluminium cans, and paper cups, the focus is on addressing PET, which is the most prevalent in the inland and marine ecology.

This year, in the Eastern Cape, CCBSA partnered with the Provincial Department of Forestry, Fisheries, and Environmental Affairs in the Buffalo City Municipality to clean West Bank Beach in East London. The bottler also partnered with the Wildlife and Environment Society of South Africa (WESSA), to clean Brighton Beach in Gqeberha.

In KZN, CCBSA partnered with UMhlathuze Municipality to clean Alkanstrand Beach in Richards Bay.

This year’s beach clean-ups attracted 220 volunteers, with the support of CCBSA’s Public Affairs, Communication, and Sustainability (PACS) Department.

The clean-ups are sponsored by CCBSA, with the support of the PET Recycling Company (PETCO), Matongoni Recycling, and logistics operator Phambili SCS.

“While we continue to collect and recycle waste material to reduce air, water, and environmental pollution, real transformation will happen when the public is much more aware of its role in waste management,” says Mzimba. “Not only do we need to educate people about the importance of recycling and proper disposal of waste, but we have to provide communities with economic opportunities in the waste economy.

“Through our various partnerships with schools, industry partners and recycling companies on the ground, we are making significant headway in ensuring that waste in South African communities is thoroughly collected and processed, while offering local people the opportunity to sell material they collect to earn an extra income,” concludes Mzimba.

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About CCBSA

Coca-Cola Beverages South Africa (CCBSA) is a proudly South African company which began operating as a legal entity in July 2016, after the merger of six non-alcoholic ready to drink bottling operations. We are level 1 B-BBEE empowered company. We employ over 7000 people at 13 manufacturing facilities across the country. As a subsidiary of Coca-Cola Beverages Africa (CCBA) and a bottler for The Coca-Cola Company, our vision is to refresh Africa every day and make our continent a better place for all. We manufacture and distribute Coca-Cola beverages that make life’s everyday moments more enjoyable, while doing business the right way. The result is shared opportunity for our customers, our employees, our communities, and our shareholders. We conduct our business ethically, transparently, and conscientiously. We espouse an inclusive business culture to reflect our African identity. We accelerate sustainable, profitable revenue growth across all categories and offer an innovative portfolio of products that respond to customer needs and consumer preferences. Profitability is important, but not at any cost. People matter. Our planet matters. We do business the right way by following our values and partnering for solutions that benefit us all.

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