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Nestlé Go The ‘Eggstra’ Mile for Easter with 100% Recyclable Eggs

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Today, Nestlé UK & Ireland is the first major confectioner to announce its entire Easter egg packaging is 100% recyclable by replacing rigid plastic with cardboard in its mug eggs.
With Easter eggs creating 3,000 tonnes of UK waste each year*, the manufacturer of SMARTIES®, KIT KAT® and AERO® Easter eggs, has become the first major confectioner to remove plastic packaging from all its eggs – the culmination of a six year process that has saved 726 tonnes of plastic waste going to landfill per year**.

The last products to become 100% recyclable were the YORKIE®, MUNCHIES® and KIT KAT® Easter eggs which include a branded mug.  The 48 tonnes of plastic used to secure the mug and egg has been replaced with recyclable cardboard certified by the Forest Stewardship Council and a compostable film for the windows resulting in a 30% reduction in packaging in the mug eggs.  In 2011, 100 tonnes of plastic was removed across the entire range.

David Rennie, Managing Director, Nestlé Confectionery UK & Ireland, said:

“Nestlé carefully considers the environmental impact of packaging as an integral part of its product design.  Since the early 1990s, we have been reducing the amount of packaging we use through our global source reduction programme – eliminating unnecessary packaging and reducing weight while ensuring product quality.”

Highlights in UK and Ireland of this reduction programme include:

  • Since 2006, Nestlé Confectionery U & Ireland has reduced the weight of packaging for small and medium-sized eggs by 30-50%. In 2009, the company became the first major confectioner to replace non-recyclable plastic with recyclable cardboard packaging in 20 million eggs – 80% of the range.  In 2012, Nestlé becomes the first confectioner to achieve 100% recyclable Easter egg packaging


  • In 2009, Nestlé Confectionery built on previous packaging reductions to Christmas selection boxes by becoming the first major confectionery manufacturer to replace the plastic insert with a card presentation tray, making 95% of the boxes recyclable. We also managed to reduce the weight of our medium-sized and large boxes by 17% and 20% respectively.


  • The new Buxton factory, opening in 2012, will produce an innovative new bottle design will use an average of 25 per cent less PET plastic than the current design, and will be used across the entire still range of Buxton Natural Mineral Water® and Nestlé Pure Life®.


  • In November 2011, NESCAFÉ launched a new compact refill pack format which have a reduced environmental impact as they require 50% fewer lorries per tonne of coffee to transport them to retailers


  • Quality Street  tins now use less metal and was the first chocolate assortment brand to use compostable wrappers

The Easter egg packaging news comes only two weeks after Nestlé Confectionery UK became the first major confectioner to achieve no artificial colours, flavours and preservatives in any of its range.

Helen Bingham, campaign manager for Keep Britain Tidy said:

"Nestlé’s achievement in becoming the first major confectioner to create 100% recyclable Easter egg packaging is a great step forward for the confectionery industry and we hope that other manufacturers follow their lead. The new packaging will prevent over 700 tonnes of waste going to landfill this Easter.  This reinforces Keep Britain Tidy's 'Love Where You Live' campaign aims, which are to encourage communities and businesses to take responsibility for minimising their impact on the environment.”

Richard Swannell, Director of Design and Waste Prevention, WRAP said:

“WRAP welcomes Nestlé’s commitment to optimise Easter egg packaging while also increasing its recyclability. It is packaging innovation like this that helps consumers minimise and recycle their waste effectively."

For more information, please contact:

James Maxton (Nestlé): 01904 602655 / [email protected]

Phil Drew: [email protected] / 020 78394321 / 07581 57 2001


Notes to editor

*WRAP, Reducing Easter Packaging, 2009

**Based on a comparison with the 726 tonnes of plastic used by Nestlé to make Easter egg boxes in 2008

Easter eggs by numbers:

  • Waste saved by Nestlé packaging reduction: 726 tonnes per year
  • In 2011 86 million Easter eggs were sold, of which Nestlé confectionery sold 18.5 million
  • Nestlé sells one in five of the UK’s Easter eggs
  • The 2011 UK Easter egg market was worth £280 million, with total annual confectionery sales for the year just under £5bn
  • In 2009, Nestlé Confectionery UK became the first major confectionery company in the country to replace non-recyclable plastic with recyclable cardboard packaging in 20 million Easter eggs, 80% of the 25 million we produced that year
  • Nestlé also reduced packaging for our small and medium-sized eggs by 30% in 2009, helping to save over 700 tonnes of materials.  The 30% reduction exceeded the WRAP industry agreement to reduce medium egg carton weight by 25%
  • In 2010, we introduced cardboard trays to many of our large Easter eggs, replacing plastic inserts and reduced the packaging used in large eggs by 50%.
  • In 2011, Nestlé Confectionery UK reduced the amount of packaging materials used for medium Easter eggs by a further 100 tonnes (12.6%) compared with the previous year
  • In 2012, Nestlé Confectionery UK becomes the first major confectioner to remove plastic from all its Easter eggs, creating the first 100% fully recyclable range

About Nestlé Confectionery UK:

Nestlé Confectionery UK manufactures some of Nestlé’s most popular and iconic confectionery brands including KIT KAT (the UK’s No 1 selling biscuit), QUALITY STREET, AERO, SMARTIES and ROWNTREE’S.  
For information on Nestlé S.A., click on the following link: