At GCPL, we are currently processing an equivalent to 40% of our post-consumer plastic packaging waste

At GCPL, we are currently processing an equivalent to 40% of our post-consumer plastic packaging waste

Extended Producer Responsibility

A 2015 study estimated that India generates over 15,000 tonnes of plastic waste every day. Of this, over 40% of the plastic is single-use packaging material, that is most likely to be sent to landfill.

For an FMCG company, plastic has been a practical choice of packaging because of its excellent barrier properties and light weight. However, poor management of plastic waste has posed severe environmental concerns. In India, waste management is typically handled by municipal or Urban Local Bodies (ULBs), formal private enterprises with the informal sector. To tackle the growing problem of waste, it is vital that all stakeholders come together.

At GCPL, we are constantly innovating to make our products of superior-quality, affordable and environmentally sustainable. While a viable replacement to plastic packaging is being explored, we have set up infrastructure and systems to collect and process plastic waste generated from post-consumer use.

Before the Government of India's Plastic Waste Management Rules 2016 (PWM Rules 2016) came into force, we established a collection mechanism for post-consumer plastic packaging waste as our Extended Producer's Responsibility (EPR).

In 2018-19, we have collected over 4,550 MT of post-consumer plastic waste from five states, which is brand and geography neutral. Of this, over 60% of the waste is multi-layered plastic waste. The total collected and processed waste is equivalent to 40% of our post-consumer plastic packaging waste. By March 2021, we aim to collect back 100% of the plastic waste generated by our packaging.

Keeping circular economy principles at our core, we have adopted a multi-stakeholder approach designed to be economically viable, environmentally oriented, and socially inclusive. We have thoughtfully collaborated with municipal corporations, producer responsibility organisations, social enterprises and resident welfare associations, to implement plastic waste management projects. We are also experimenting with using recycled plastic from our projects back in our product packaging.

State Plastic waste collected
and processed during
FY2018-19 (in MT)
Karnataka 598
Telangana 2575
Maharashtra 792
Gujarat 350
Punjab 236
Total 4551

In addition, we have joined the 'We Care' consortium - a group of over 35 brand owners – to expand the EPR initiative to multiple states across the country. In line with the PWM Rules 2016, we have also set robust sustainable packaging targets on the basis of our 3R strategy of Reduce, Reuse and Recycle. Read more about our goals and progress here.