Henkel has teamed up with Waste Free Oceans to manufacture over a million bottles sourced from plastic waste removed from oceans that will be used for the Lovables laundry brand.

The companies recovered plastic from rivers, lakes, seas and oceans to annually produce 100 metric tonnes of usable recycled material.

“Eight million metric tonnes of plastic end up in our oceans, which is the equivalent of 15 grocery bags filled with plastic for every meter of coastline in the world.”

Established in 2011, Waste Free Oceans collaborates with businesses and other organisations to collect plastic from oceans and rivers to produce new items.

Waste Free Oceans co-founder Bernard Merkx said: “An estimated eight million metric tonnes of plastic end up in our oceans every year, which is the equivalent of 15 grocery bags filled with plastic for every meter of coastline in the world.

“At Waste Free Oceans, our answer is to enter into partnerships to tackle this problem together. We’re now delighted to be working with Henkel and organising remediation actions together: it’s our largest and most ambitious partnership with one unique partner so far – aiming to remove enough marine litter from the environment to produce 100 metric tonnes of usable recycled material every year for at least three years.”

The companies are set to start their joint operation by collecting plastic waste from the Danube River later this year, with activities targeting locations ranging from Bulgaria through to Hungary and Romania.

Under the plan, the partnership will be helped by volunteers and fishermen to carry out the operations.

Fishermen will use a special device that removes plastic litter floating in water to trawl the river.

Henkel Laundry & Home Care business unit Global Research and Development head Prof Dr Thomas Müller-Kirschbaum said: “Together, we can remove a meaningful amount of plastic from the environment, while also raising consumer awareness of marine plastic litter and the need to better protect our oceans and rivers.”

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