Ritchies and Drakes get behind Lo Bros’ mission to remove ocean plastic

Lo Bros Not Soda has announced it has removed 17,000kg of plastic from the ocean, which is the equivalent weight to one million plastic bottles.

This milestone was accomplished in partnership with Seven Clean Seas, an ocean clean-up organisation based in Indonesia. The plastic has been removed from around the islands of Batam and Bintan in Indonesia, which are known as some of the worst affected areas for ocean plastic globally.

Plastic recovered will be sent for sorting, separating and classification at the Seven Clean Seas Materials Recovery Facility, where it can be recycled and repurposed or sent for secondary processing.

This first achievement is part of a large-scale clean-up commitment by Not Soda, after last year pledging to remove the equivalent weight of five million plastic bottles in ocean plastic from the seas by 2025.

Independent retailers have been the first to get behind the initiative, with Ritchies and Drakes having a joint goal to clean up the equivalent of two million plastic bottles from the ocean by 2025.

Lo Bros Founder, Didi Lo, said: “Plastic pollution continues to rise and disadvantaged nations remain the ones bearing the brunt of this issue. Seven Clean Seas, with the aid of Not Soda, has done exceptionally well to reach this goal of recovering the equivalent weight of one million plastic bottles from these waterways.

“It is critical that we acknowledge this achievement, but we also realise how far we have to go to remove all plastic from our oceans to protect them from environmental disaster.”

For every can of Lo Bros Not Soda sold, the company funds the removal of the equivalent weight of two plastic soft drink bottles from marine environments via Seven Clean Seas. However, that doesn’t just mean that only plastic bottles are being removed – the work encompasses all forms of ocean plastic in the area.

This is substantial, considering a recent report in scientific journal PLOS ONE found an estimated 171 trillion pieces of plastic are now in the world’s oceans, an increase from 16 trillion in 2005. Scientists warned that this could nearly triple by 2040 if no action is taken.

Every week, the Seven Clean Seas team visits the coasts of Batam, where tonnes of plastic waste accumulates daily on the shores of the island. This deeply affects the local community and its surrounds, with any cleaned areas becoming clogged with plastic just days later.

Seven Clean Seas aims to make a difference in these communities, with the Not Soda partnership also supporting hundreds of local jobs and boosting over 60 families across the targeted areas.

Tom Peacock-Nazil, Co-founder of Seven Clean Seas, said: “The seas are f***ing awesome, and they’re filled with plastic! Luckily our mates at Lo Bros share our love for the ocean and partnered up Not Soda with Seven Clean Seas to do something about it.

“Now, after only a handful of months into the partnership, we’ve already hit an incredible million-bottle ocean cleanup milestone. Together, we’re embracing bold flavours and even bolder environmental actions, all to protect our planet’s precious seas. Not Soda’s recyclable aluminium cans are the perfect match for our mission and this partnership is proof that our daily choices can lead to healthier bodies and cleaner oceans. Plastic pollution, consider yourself on notice!”

This article was originally written by Brydie Allen for National Liquor News.

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