Which packing is preferable from an environmental standpoint?
Glass and plastic are practically the same from an ecological point of view. The important thing is that the empty packing is returned and reused and/or recycled. Bottles that can be returned are to a large extent ecologically equivalent to disposable bottles. The bottles that are returned are generally seen as being more environmentally friendly, but they still require energy for the cleaning process, transportation and dealing with the waste water they generate. Due to a so-called ecological balance, the Federal Office for the Environment (BAFU) decided in the end that the glass bottle is a little more environmentally friendly when based on relatively short distances of transportation. However, if the distance amounts to several 100 kilometres, the packing made from plastic (PET) performs more favourably, providing that the empty packaging is collected within the context of a suitable organisation and then recycled. The retail trade’s policy for a product range, however, can often deprive the consumer of the option, because they do not want to burden themselves anymore with empties made from glass.