The following is an excerpt from a marketing plan prototype for a fictional beverage company. This is the introduction addressing the plastic crisis.
What is the Plastic Crisis?
Plastic is becoming a crisis of monumental proportions, threatening the well-being of our planet and our very existence. Globally we produce more plastic than ever before, about 300 million tonnes annually. Having no way to recycle or accommodate this tremendous generation of waste, the equivalent of a full garbage truck full of trash is dumped into the ocean every minute, and much of it is plastic. Consider the following:
- The United States generates more plastic waste than any country in the world. This is especially significant because Americans comprise just 4% of the population but generate 17% of the world’s plastic waste.
- 70% of plastic drink bottles are not recycled.
- Globally, about 20,000 plastic bottles are bought every second, up to 68 billion plastic bottles per year.
- Only 3% of discarded plastic bottles are turned into something new.
- Plastic does not biodegrade – it photodegrades. This means that it takes up to 1,000 years for every single bottle to decompose, leaking pollutants into our soil and water along the way.
- Unlike other materials, plastic loses its quality each time it is recycled, and the process is difficult and expensive. Most plastic collected for recycling still ends up in a landfill as many companies opt for cheaper, new plastic in their manufacturing process.
While this is disheartening, the opportunity lies in the global interconnected platform we have at our fingertips in which we can communicate the desperate need to conserve resources and reduce single use plastic waste. Consider the illustrious quote by Margerate Mead, “Never doubt that a group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.”
What Can You Do About the Plastic Crisis?
By educating the consumer, we create an unavoidable need for an alternative. Brands like Beverage Buddy appeal not only to the booming trend for seltzers and flavored waters, but also exemplify a low waste and sustainable business model utilizing reusable bottles and a cartridge recycling program.
Empowering the public to understand that their contribution matters, and that they are either aiding in, or helping to reduce the problem with every purchase. Consumers need to understand that they hold tremendous power, and if they can look at the bigger picture and consider the impact that these little, everyday choices have, they can do something monumental for the future generations. You can enjoy your beverages and do it in a way that is entirely sustainable and good for our planet. We thrive on that good feeling we get when we make decisions that are for the greater good and come from a higher collective state of consciousness.