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    Coca-Cola Co. Launches PlantBottle

    Beverage maker debuts first-generation container made partially from plants.

    ATLANTA -- Coca-Cola Co. beverages contained in the company's PlantBottle packaging are beginning to arrive on store shelves in select markets throughout the world, initiating the company's goal of producing 2 billion of the special PET plastic bottles by the end of 2010.

    PlantBottle PET bottles are made partially from plants, reducing the company's dependence on petroleum, a non-renewable resource. The bottles are 100-percent recyclable. Preliminary research indicates the carbon footprint for the PlantBottle packaging is smaller than for bottles made with traditional PET, the company said.

    "Today, we are taking a major step along our sustainable packaging journey as The Coca-Cola Co. becomes the first-to-market with a recyclable PET plastic bottle made partially from plants," said Muhtar Kent, Chairman and CEO, The Coca-Cola Co. "From Coke brands in Copenhagen to Dasani water in the western United States, we are starting to roll out the first generation of the bottle of the future."

    Throughout Denmark, Coca-Cola, Coca-Cola Light and Coca-Cola Zero in 500-milliliter and 2-liter sizes are available in the PlantBottle packaging. A variety of products, including Coca-Cola, Sprite, Fresca and Dasani will be in Western Canada in the PlantBottle beginning in December and in Vancouver for the 2010 Winter Olympic Games.

    Seattle, San Francisco and Los Angeles will see PlantBottle packaging used for sparkling brands and Dasani in several sizes starting in January. PlantBottle packaging is made through a process that turns sugar cane and molasses, a by-product of sugar production, into a key component for PET plastic. The sugar cane being used comes from predominantly rain-fed crops that were processed into ethanol, not refined sugar. Ultimately, the company's goal is to use non-food, plant-based waste, such as wood chips or wheat stalks, to produce recyclable PET plastic bottles.

    While the bio-based component can account for up to 30 percent of the resulting PET plastic in PlantBottle packaging, the percentage varies for bottles that also contain recycled PET. For the PlantBottle packaging in the United States and Canada, up to 30 percent of the content in the PET plastic comes from plants.

    "While the PlantBottle introduction and market launch put The Coca-Cola Co. on the forefront of bio-based packaging innovation, we are continuing to strive to make an even better bottle," said Scott Vitters, Coca-Cola's director of sustainable packaging. "Our vision is to continue innovating to achieve a bottle that is made with 100 percent plant-waste material while remaining completely recyclable."

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