Independent glass packaging specialist Rawlings has worked with UK social enterprise Belu and glass manufacturer OI to produce “the lightest weight glass bottle for mineral water in the UK”, branded Ethical Glass.
Bristol, UK-based Rawlings claims that its use of new techniques and innovations has reduced the weight of the previous lightweight 750ml and 330ml bottles both by 20g, entering “new ground in terms of manufacturing and lightweighting” for OI.
Belu is a British social enterprise that donates 100% of its profits to clean water charity WaterAid – it claims to be the only bottled water company in the UK to guarantee 50% recycled plastic in all its bottles, while remaining 100% carbon neutral.
Through the weight savings in the new Ethical Glass products, Belu says it can make potential environmental gains of 850,000kg of glass annually (equivalent to 2.1 million wine bottles), and reduce its carbon emissions by 11%.
A royalty of up to 0.3 pence will be donated to WaterAid for each bottle purchased from Belu.
Royalty contributions through bottle purchases made in one year by the entire group of Belu suppliers is expected to amount to a donation of £32,500 to the clean water charity, said to be equivalent to "changing the lives of 2,000 people currently living without clean water and sanitation".
The Ethical Glass brand is not being retained exclusively for Belu, but is also being made available to other mineral water companies, without the capital cost to them of developing their own bottle.
The Belu social enterprise describes it is a “bid to lower the industry’s carbon footprint”.