As part of a broader programme of review and testing of a range of sustainable packaging options, Whittaker’s has launched a trial within the Wellington region of a compostable packaging solution. In the context of the need for end-to-end solutions for truly sustainable packaging, this trial includes an exciting partnership with For the Better Good and with local retail partners across the region.
From today, Whittaker’s Peanut Slabs in specially marked, plant-based compostable packaging will be available to purchase from participating stores; and each of those stores has a unique For The Better Good collection box for the compostable wrappers to be returned to. Packaging returned to the collection boxes will be composted at For the Better Good’s Edible Earth Urban Micro Farm in Cannons Creek, Porirua.
Alternatively, the packaging can be disposed of in-home compost bins. Whittaker’s co-Chief Operating Officer Holly Whittaker noted that there are no easy solutions to identifying packaging that is genuinely sustainable and meets other feasibility requirements, so the purpose of the trial is to fully test this with the help of partners and Whittaker’s Chocolate Lovers.
“There are many factors we need to assess before making any decisions on potential use across Whittaker’s range in the future. These include any impacts on product quality, performance in the factory and in-store, likely at-scale feasibility of collection and disposal of the compostable wrappers, and whether retailers and Whittaker’s Chocolate Lovers have a good experience with the packaging,” said Whittaker.
“It’s important we take the time to thoroughly test potential solutions like this so that we can be sure we are making the right decisions as we work towards 100% sustainable packaging by 2025, building on where we are now with more than three-quarters of our packaging already being recyclable.”
Whittaker’s Chocolate Lovers who are keen to contribute their feedback and stay up to date with the trial, including updates on how For The Better Good is putting the compostable packaging to work on its Edible Earth Urban Micro Farm, can join a dedicated Facebook group on the Whittaker’s Chocolate Lovers Facebook page.
Holly Whittaker explained that a key challenge with compostable packaging currently is the potential for it to end up in the wrong place (in general waste or recycling bins) due to the lack of collection and composting infrastructure, and Whittaker’s were impressed by the work For The Better Good has done to address this.
For the Better Good are the creators of the plant-based Better Bottle and nationwide ‘Better Collection’ system which enables their compostable water bottles to be returned to retail partners for processing in their private compost sites, and spans from Queenstown to Auckland; a first of its kind in New Zealand.
“We’re delighted that through For The Better Good our compostable packaging will be composted locally and used at their Edible Earth Urban Micro Farm, which is located not far from our factory in Porirua, to create food for our local community,” said Whittaker.
Whittaker’s Chocolate Lovers in the Wellington region will find the specially marked Peanut Slabs in compostable packaging and the For The Better Good collection boxes in New World Porirua, New World Kapiti, New World Paremata, New World Thorndon, Pak’nSave Porirua, Z Porirua, Mitre 10 Porirua, BP Porirua, The Warehouse Porirua, and Mobil Porirua.
The trial is expected to run for approximately eight weeks, depending on how quickly the limited number of products in the trial sell-out.