FIJI Water is rare among premium bottled waters in that it is bottled exclusively in PET plastic; other brands typically use glass or a combination of plastic and glass materials. We have committed to using high-quality, 100% recyclable polyethylene terephthalate, or PET, plastic because it is both the more responsible environmental choice, and ensures that the quality and safety of our product remain protected. Liter for liter, PET bottles require 24% less energy to produce, generate 40% less solid waste, and emit 46% less carbon during shipping than glass bottles. Compared to other plastics, PET is easily recyclable and has many post-consumer applications. The demand for recycled PET is extremely high due to its use as a replacement for polyester, which is used in carpeting and textiles. Some companies turn PET into fiberfill for sleeping bags, toys, and jackets.
FIJI Water works continuously to reduce the amount of materials used in the production and transportation of our product. In 2009, we reduced the plastic content of our bottles by 10% on average and by as much as 17% in our popular smaller-size 500mL and 330mL bottles. We also reduced our use of shrink film by nearly 10% and are testing even thinner-gauge designs. We continue to explore and test further opportunities to reduce the amount of plastic in our bottles and caps.
Our iconic square bottle is not only visually arresting, but also efficient. Its square shape allows us to pack FIJI Water bottles more tightly, thereby minimizing shipping space and improving energy efficiency. By using square-shaped containers, FIJI Water is able to transport nearly 10% fewer pallets and trucks compared to other companies that distribute their product in traditional round containers.
Using recycled rather than virgin materials delivers significant environmental benefits. In 2010, FIJI Water finished our transition to 100% recycled-content cartons for shipping and storing bottles. We are also looking to use post-consumer resin (rPET) in our bottles and are working to identify reliable sources of rPET comparable in quality and safety to our current PET material.