Coca-Cola: Commerce Leadership in the Fight Against Plastic Pollution?
Written by, Vanessa Cole January 9, 2019
Wait... a feature about Coca-Cola on AddyPresLifeSTYLE?! Yes, we are aware that Coca-Cola is a company that produces and distributes sugary drinks, which have been identified as culprits in human health concerns and that it's participation in a one way bottle business model, did contribute to the plastic pollution crisis we are paying the price for now (along with many other corporations who adopted this practice in the 1960's)... BUT we want to give improvement credit where credit is due, because growth mindset tells us that we learn from our mistakes, and we have some commending to do for Coca-Cola's work in taking responsibility for their product's planetary impact. To be fair, how can a company that relies on sales of sugary drinks make a compelling case that it also cares deeply about the health of it's consumers (many of whom are children) or the planet they live on?
Well, they can't, really... on the human health front, anyway- soda is just not a healthy food choice. But they CAN show leadership in cleaning up their planetary mess... and they seem to care about that.
We're willing to offer a pat on the back for the work Coca-Cola is doing to clean up its plastic pollution contribution, because we believe in human skill sets that include making responsible choices. It's well established that soda isn't good for us. Neither is candy, cake, pizza and a whole laundry list of things you find in the majority of every classroom, family pantry and child's birthday party around the world. We like to call these treats, sometimes foods, that require us to make responsible choices to enjoy (and guide our children to make the same responsible choices as well). It's pretty standard for the average American to consume sugary drinks and eat "unhealthy" food, on occasion. Fortunately, for companies like Coca-Cola, who distribute the number one selling soda in the world, we make these "sometimes" food choices regardless of the known unhealthy truths for our body. WE CHOOSE to sometimes consume these treats, some of us, more than others.
Look, I don't advocate for soda, in fact it is a rare occasion I allow my children to drink soda or I take even a sip of it, myself. But there are two things I do advocate for that help me make my "sometimes food" decisions without having to eliminate them altogether... self management and responsible decision making, both skills built through a value for educational Social Emotional Learning.
I also use these skills to consider the environmental impact of the companies that manufacture and distribute the consumer products that our family may or may not, at any one time, CHOOSE to purchase and bring into our home and lifestyle through the purchase power we all have. I also consider the corporate responsibility of the commerce leadership behind the products our family purchases and what the companies we buy from do for communities and our planet, whether these companies sell completely healthy products also determines my choices to consume or not consume their products on a regular basis, sometimes basis, rare occasion or never.
This is why an article, recently published in the Washington Post made me consider Coca-Cola's initiative to take responsibility for it's impact on the plastic pollution problem that is one of many culprits robbing our children of inheriting a healthy planet from us, regardless of the fact that sugary "sometimes drinks" are one of Coca-Cola's main products and require me to educate my children on making responsible choices if they are to enjoy them and aware of Coca-Cola's packaging.
Please follow the link here to the full Washington Post Article I read, published January 7th, 2019:
In today's world, it is a fact that we ALL must take unprecedented action to regenerate our planet, and that will require families, education, community and responsible commerce to connect & act, together toward a BETTER WORLD. Coca-Cola, we applaud your corporate responsibility and your ACTION toward better, through your ambitious goal to recycle the equivalent of every bottle or can you sell by 2030 and your diverse programs providing valuable lessons that can be applied around the world. Claiming that, ultimately, your Coca-Cola Company’s progress proves that sustainable, circular recycling initiatives are possible—and valuable—for any country and any economy.
And, thank you, Coca Cola for knowing we all have a part to play in the solutions and actions that ultimately, WILL OR WILL NOT, make us proud of the planet we hand down to our children... we appreciate your environmental efforts & programs and hope you continue to participate in the validity of their effectiveness... you might call a company who can assist, Plastic Pollution Solutions.
You can help Coca-Cola out with their goal to recycle the equivalent of every bottle or can they sell by 2030... next time you see a Coca-Cola packaging product on the ground- at a beach, or a park or school play yard... pick it up, and send it to Coca Cola's CEO, James Quincey with a thank you for taking responsibility with their goal to clean up their part and a nudge to keep going with their effort!
**If you are a plastic pollution specialist, scientist or expert and have a comment or suggestion that might assist Coca Cola in their efforts, we'd love to hear your perspective. Please share with a comment.**
*Please note that AddyPresLifeSTYLE does not currently receive sponsorship from the Coca-Cola company and wrote this article based on it's own opinions & knowledge, without persuasion of any kind. Please also learn more about the science and research from those at 5Gyres, doing great work!!