One of the five districts in Gilgit-Baltistan, Hunza is located on Karakoram Highway at an altitude of 8000 ft. with a population of more than 52,000 people. In recent years, it has become a popular attraction for local and foreign tourist with approx.1.2 Million tourists visiting the region in 2018. This influx of tourist on one hand has created income generation for the local community but on the other hand has become a reason for increasing plastic waste in the district. Presently, the waste segregation and management system in the area is managed by Gilgit-Baltistan Waste Management Company (GBWMC) and District Council Hunza. An estimate indicates that more than 150,000 kgs of plastic waste is collected on a yearly basis, which increases in the tourist season. Among other factors of increase, the tourists also bring a lot of packaged goods (water bottles, carbonated drinks, tetra packaged items etc.) from down the country and eventually leave this waste in Hunza after consumption.
As the world’s largest food and beverages company Nestlé has stepped up to meet this challenge in Pakistan, with the vision to ensure that none of their packaging, including plastics, ends up in landfill or as litter. We have also publicly committed to make 100% of our packaging recyclable or reusable by 2025.
To continue our efforts, Nestlé Pakistan, District Council Hunza, Gilgit Baltistan Waste Management Company (GBWMC) and Karakoram Area Development Organization (KADO) signed a MoU to launch “Clean Hunza Project”. The project is supported by the company’s NESTLÉ FRUITA VITALS and NESTLÉ PURE LIFE brands. Nestlé Pakistan’s partnership in the initiative will encourage waste management of 150,000 kgs of plastics, followed by collection of 50,000 kgs paper packaging (used beverage cartons) in the area with an increase of 10% annually.
The project’s focus will be on the segregation of plastics and paper packaging at the waste site which, after the compressing and bailing process, will be brought down the country for recycling. We will provide a compressing and bailing unit to the Hunza district government. The company will also be distributing 10,000 reusable bags in the community during 2020 as part of the project. KADO will extend support for different community awareness activities. The project, which is first of its kind at such a high-altitude residential location, shall make a positive environmental impact at both local and national level.
We aim to reduce the environmental impact of plastic packaging by improving the collection and recycling of various kinds of plastic packaging. Globally we aim to make 100% of our packaging recyclable and reusable by 2025, in line with UN SDGs.