Drinks giant Diageo has announced that it is removing plastic from multipacks of its Irish stout brand Guinness.
Plastic ring carriers and shrink wrap will be also removed from packs of Harp, Rockshore and Smithwick’s beers, as part of Diageo’s £16m initiative.
They will be replaced with 100% recyclable and biodegradable cardboard in the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland from August.
Great Britain and other international markets will follow from 2020.
Diageo’s bottling and packaging plant in Northern Ireland will be the first site producing the new packs, with the firm investing £8m in its east Belfast plant.
It packages products which are exported around the world, including to the US, Canada, South Korea and Europe.
Diageo says under 5% of its total packaging is plastic and the changes will reduce usage by over 400 tonnes annually.
Oliver Loomes, country director of Diageo Ireland, said: “Managing our environmental impact is important for the planet and the financial sustainability of our business.
“We already have one of the most sustainable breweries in the world at (Dublin’s) St James’s Gate and we are now leading the way in sustainable packaging. This is good news for the environment and for our brand.”
Prime Minister Theresa May has pledged to ban all avoidable plastic waste in the UK by 2042.