Cover of SAS Brand Audit Report 2021

Just 12 companies are responsible for two thirds (65%) of the UK’s packaging pollution, reveals the latest Brand Audit Report from Surfers Against Sewage (SAS).

Based on data from nearly 27,000 items of packaging pollution submitted by over 50,000 volunteer litter pickers around the UK, the report shows that packaging from Coca-Cola (which describes itself as “The original great taste”) is the most prevalent waste found in eight of 12 regions.

In Wales, litter from Walkers, the crisp company, is the most widespread.

To tackle the problem, Surfers Against Sewage want action in a number of areas, including legislation to end the production and consumption of non-essential single-use and polluting plastics, and business models that are focused on reduction and reuse.

If an “all-in” Deposit Return Scheme (DRS) were to be implemented in the UK, SAS estimates that over half (52%) of the waste items produced by the 12 “Dirty Dozen” companies would not be discarded.

In the case of Coca-Cola, introducing a DRS would see that figure rise to 80%.

The full Brand Audit Report can be downloaded from the SAS website (PDF).