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Distillery launches recyclable, letterbox-friendly gin pouches

Scottish gin brand Rock Rose has launched a fully recyclable gin pouch, which can be used to refill its ceramic gin bottle and posted to a recycling facility for free.

In an effort to boost its eco-friendly credentials, Rock Rose, which is made by Dunnet Bay Distillers in the north of Scotland, has teamed up with PA Consulting, in order to devise a way to make it easier for customers to recycle its packaging.

The letterbox-sized refills will shortly be available to order online. They are pre-addressed with no envelope nor payment required to return them for recycling.

Rock Rose added that the pouches also significantly reduce the energy needed to ship its gin, with pouches weighing in at just 65 grams compared to 700 grams for the ceramic bottle.

The distillery describes the project as “the first of its kind in the UK” and said it was the result of over a year of research and development.

Martin Murray, co-founder of Dunnet Bay Distillers, commented: “We take sustainability incredibly seriously and have been working hard on our first to market recyclable pouches for over a year now.

“We are absolutely thrilled to be the first brand to have secured the support of Royal Mail for a postal recycling scheme, which we believe will be embraced by our customers.

“In the near future we plan to extend the scheme to bars, restaurants and shops, as well as making it available across all the spirits in our portfolio. What’s more, we are also offering in-store refills to customers at our distillery shop.”

The four layer laminate pouches, which boast an “easy-to-use plastic spout closure”, are recycled by Terracycle.

The eco packaging also provides a £4 per 700ml saving for customers. Rock Rose said it is aiming to have a fully biodegradable refill by 2025.

The distiller, the UK’s most northerly mainland distillery, already uses solar panels to power the site and is aiming to be a net producer of electricity by the end of 2020. It also donates its botanical waste to local farms to be used in compost.

Ryan McGinley, product design expert at PA Consulting added: “We are delighted to have helped Dunnet Bay Distillers create an environmentally friendly solution that delivers real value to its distillery and customers.

“It took ingenuity to develop a flexible pack that could be sent direct to consumers, which not only eradicates the need to use a single use bottle but also reduces their costs. This is a great example of PA bringing ingenuity to life.’’

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