Single-use plastics, primarily packaging, has contributed greatly to the continued rise in plastic production in recent years. These include common everyday items such as water bottles, potato chip packets, and wrappers. Most single-use plastics cannot be recycled and thereby end up in landfills, incinerated, or as trash littering our surroundings. All such methods of disposal are ultimately harmful to the health of the environment and all living things on Earth.
Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) companies are massive corporations that are currently promoting this damaging “throw-away culture”. The top 7 FMCGs for years in a row have been identified by #BreakFreeFromPlastic as Coca-Cola Company, PepsiCo, Nestlé, Unilever, Mars Inc., Mondelez International, and Procter & Gamble.
Most efforts by these FMCG companies to be more sustainable have been half-hearted. There is too much investment in projects that do not make any meaningful change, otherwise called false solutions (Break Free From Plastic, 2021).
FMCG companies regularly “point the finger” at consumers, expecting individuals to take all the responsibility rather than owning up themselves. For example, many FMCG companies like to tout downstream solutions such as community beach clean-ups and recycling as “the way out” of this plastic crisis. Such efforts are admirable but ineffective. Picture an overflowing bathtub; a false solution is equivalent to attempting to scoop water back into the bathtub rather than turning off the tap!
In other words, change needs to happen at the source. FMCG companies must enact true long-term upstream solutions – switching to reuse-based product delivery systems which eliminate single-use plastic packaging entirely.
 Break Free From Plastic . (2021). Missing The Mark, Unveiling corporate false solutions to the plastic pollution crisis. https://www.breakfreefromplastic.org/missing-the-mark-unveiling-corporate-false-solutions-to-the-plastic-crisis/