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Recyclemania gears up ‘meaningful change’ in Zambia

Nestlé and Chilanga Cement has partnered up to reduce the amount of plastic scrap being landfilled in Zambia. The objective is reaching net zero by 2050 and, ultimately, creating a waste-free future.

The two companies have launched a ‘plastic neutrality’ project targeting the collection of about 160 tonnes of end-of-life plastics to be processed every month. The initiative is led by the Nestlé scheme Recyclemania which currently collects 120 tonnes of plastic scrap per month.

This leaves about 14 tonnes of plastic scrap, dubbed non-recyclable, which is typically dumped in landfills. The alternative is sending it for energy recovery. Nestlé proposes a closed loop incineration process that doesn’t leave any residue, as pioneered by Chilanga Cement.

‘This is an exciting project for us here in Zambia,’ says Nestlé’s business development specialist Zubayer Davids. ‘We are pleased to be partnering with a local business and the local community in delivering meaningful change in managing waste.’

Nestlés efforts have created 37 new jobs, directly benefiting more than 600 collectors in the region. ‘Innovation in the ways we dispose of the plastic is at the heart of this project. Equally important to note is how it will help sustain and improve livelihoods in Zambia.’  

Meanwhile, Chilenga Cement has recently won three awards presented by the Corporate Social Responsibility Network Zambia: the best environmental excellence for environmental action in education; best community social impact in housing and infrastructure; and the chairperson’s award for CSR Innovation.

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