Case study

Actimel becomes carbon neutral, partly thanks to smart packaging


Food company Danone has achieved carbon neutrality in Belgium for the entire production cycle of its fresh dairy brand Actimel. This was announced by the company at the end of March 2022. This new milestone is the culmination of solid action plans put in place at the production plant in Rotselaar and cooperation with local dairy farmers to reduce CO2 emissions. The further optimisation of the Actimel packaging is a part of this bigger picture.

The Actimel brand received the Carbon Neutral Footprint certification from Carbon Trust®, an independent global consultancy firm for climate change and sustainable development. Actimel shows a strong local commitment: produced with milk from farms in an average 70 km radius around the Belgian plant in Rotselaar, it will be Danone's first dairy product brand to be carbon neutral. Danone has taken numerous actions to reach this point, including switching to green energy at the production site, supporting dairy farmers when they switch to more sustainable farming but also packaging optimisation.

19 tonnes of CO2 per year

Since the launch of Actimel in 1994 lots of initiatives have been taken in terms of milk production and the use of plastic packaging. Packaging (including recycling) accounts for almost 20% of an Actimel bottle’s carbon footprint. Danone intends to continue to reduce its carbon footprint through packaging innovations.

  • The Actimel bottle is 100% recyclable. An empty Actimel package belongs in the New Blue Bag, so it can be recycled into secondary raw material to make new products or packaging.
  • The weight of the bottle has been halved since its launch: from 11 g of HDPE in 1992 to 6 g in 2007 and 5.35 g in 2021, reducing CO2 emissions by 9%.
  • The cardboard around the bottles is made of 100% recycled material.
  • The plastic sleeve covering the Actimel bottles of the 0% range will be removed from the middle of this year, saving up to 8 tonnes of plastic and 19 tonnes of CO2 per year.

Want to know more about packaging innovation for more and better recycling? Discover the Dos and Don’ts for Design4Recycling.


Actimel avec descriptions
Actimel - NL