With a joint turnover in excess of £9 billion the companies include Britvic, Cadbury Schweppes, Coca-Cola Enterprises, Dairy Crest, Duchy Originals, Mars UK (formerly Masterfoods), McBride, Nestle and Premier Foods.
All nine have all pledged to stop packaging waste growth by 2008, deliver packaging waste reductions by 2010 and identify ways to reduce the 6.7million tonnes of annual food waste produced.
WRAP chief executive Liz Goodwin said: In addition to the obvious environmental benefits that reduced packaging waste brings, consumers will have less packaging to carry home from the supermarket and more space in their bins. Packaging reduction also delivers cost savings to business.
With the addition of these new signatories, the Courtauld Commitment is an even more powerful vehicle for change, resulting in real reductions in packaging waste.
Food and Drink Federation (FDF) director general Melanie Leech also welcomed the announcement and said: FDF members are working proactively with their food chain partners to minimise packaging, reduce food waste and increase recycling as a sustainability priority. I am delighted to see that more of our members have now decided to support the Courtauld Commitment.
A new method to measure packaging waste reduction for Courtauld signatories is also being introduced in consultation with them and details should be finalised within the next month. The changes are intended to aid consistent reporting and enable the group to track their collective impact.
Existing signatories include Asda, Boots, Budgens, the Co-operative Group, Heinz, Iceland, Kwik Save, Londis, Marks & Spencer, Morrisons, Northern Foods, Premier Foods, Sainsburys, Somerfield, Tesco, Unilever and Waitrose.