Tetra Paks Make LCBO's New Promotion "Enviro Sham" not "Enviro Chic"

Monday, March 31, 2008
For Immediate Release

Toronto: Today’s launch of the LCBO’s “Enviro Chic” Campaign that includes promoting Tetra Paks is really an “Enviro Sham” says a Toronto-based environmental group.

“The LCBO is undermining its emerging green credentials by pretending that Tetra Paks are good for the environment,” says Franz Hartmann, Executive Director of the Toronto Environmental Alliance (TEA). “Calling Tetra Paks an ‘eco-friendly container’ is Enviro Sham, not Enviro Chic.”

“Tetra Paks are no environmental solution. Canada-wide, more than half of those sold go right to landfill,” said Hartmann. “And of those that are recovered, only a small amount of the carton is actually used for something else. The rest gets dumped in a landfill.”

According to a 2006 report by the Association of Municipalities of Ontario (AMO), the recycling of Tetra Paks “results in a very small fraction of reusable fibre pulp for manufacturing into low grade paper products” and the rest of the package, namely the plastic and aluminum layers, are landfilled.

Another 2006 report by CM Consulting, compares the “recovery” rate of various beverage containers across Canada. Only about half of the Tetra Paks and gable-top containers used in Canada are recovered. In comparison, almost 100% of all refillable glass bottles are recovered.

As well, Tetra Paks are made with virgin pulp and aluminum. Making these products requires lots of energy, uses up natural resources and creates lots of pollution. After a single use, most of the carton ends up in landfill.

“If the LCBO was serious about being Enviro Chic, they would promote beverages in refillable, glass bottles,” said Hartmann. “Looking simply at the weight of the packaging ignores all the other environmental damage done by Tetra Paks and other single use containers.”