On Wednesday June 2nd Ignacio Gavilan, Sustainability Director at The Consumer Goods Forum (CGF), spoke at “3BL Forum – Brands Taking Stands – LIVE!”, a virtual platform which convenes corporate leaders from top brands for a series of sessions meant to explore “the why” and “the how” behind business leadership at this critical moment in history. Ignacio, who oversees the CGF’s Coalition on Plastic Waste was invited to join a panel called “Pushing Past Plastic: How Brands Can Be Part of the Solution”.

Ignacio was joined in the discussion by Bridget Croke, Managing Director of Closed Loop Partners, and Burgess Davis, Vice President of Global Sustainable Packaging and Sustainability Strategy at PepsiCo. Moderated by Mary Mazzoni, senior editor of TriplePundit, the panel explored how large legacy companies can begin to transition away from single-use plastics.

Ignacio presented the work of the CGF’s Coalition on Plastic Waste, and shared that its “recipe to solve the plastic problem”, is less and better plastic, and a better system for collection and sorting. He then spoke on the Coalition’s work on sustainable packaging design, sharing that this summer the Coalition will be releasing the remaining seven in its series of “Golden Design Rules” for the design of plastic packaging, created to accelerate progress towards the aim of using less and better plastic. Ignacio also touched upon the circular economy, telling the panel that the role of the industry lies in innovation and redesign. “Designing for reusability and recyclability is the fundamental piece where the industry can add to this circular economy debate”, he said.

The panel concluded by sharing their thoughts on the major steps that global brands can take to help solve the plastic waste problem. They concluded that collaboration is key: no one brand or organisation can solve the issue, and it requires end to end thinking with peers, consumers and pre-competitors. Re-design is vital, and companies must look at their product portfolio and simplify where possible.

For more information about the CGF’s work to help drive progress towards a world where no plastic ends up in nature, learn about our Plastic Waste Coalition.