Johnnie Walker in ‘world first’ with paper spirits bottle

Diageo claims to have made the world’s first plastic-free, paper-based spirits bottle. The bottle will be used commercially for the producer’s Johnnie Walker Scotch whisky brand in early 2021.

The company is one of a number of FMCG businesses in non-competing categories that has teamed up with venture management company Pilot Lite to launch the sustainable packaging tech company Pulpex, which has developed the bottle.

Other partners in the venture include Pepsi Co and Unilever, with more expected to be announced later in the year, each using the technology for their own branded bottles.

The bottle is made from sustainably sourced wood pulp to food-safe standards and is fully recyclable in mainstream waste channels. 

Ewan Andrew, chief sustainability officer at Diageo, said: “We are constantly striving to push the boundaries within sustainable packaging and this bottle has the potential to be truly groundbreaking.

“It feels fitting that we should launch it with Johnnie Walker, a brand that has often led the way in innovation throughout its 200 years existence.”

Pilot Lite director Sandy Westwater said: “By working together, we can use the collective power of the brands to help minimise the environmental footprint of packaging by changing manufacturing and consumer behaviours.”