Diageo partners with ecoSPIRITS to take circular economy of its spirits distribution to a global scale

29 Nov 2023 | Press release
  • Diageo becomes first spirits producer to sign a global agreement with ecoSPIRITS for the distribution of Gordon’s, Captain Morgan and Smirnoff in reusable glass packaging format in an expected 18 markets over the next three years.
  • Diageo’s spirits will be sent to participating bars, hotels and restaurants in a 4.5L ecoTOTE designed to be used up to 150 times, and once empty will be collected, cleaned and refilled with the same spirit.
  • ecoSPIRITS provides the world’s first lower carbon, lower waste spirits distribution technology through a circular economy format, known as ecoTOTEs.

Wednesday 29th November: Diageo, the maker of Johnnie Walker whisky, Don Julio tequila and Guinness, has today announced a global agreement with circular economy technology company ecoSPIRITS. The agreement provides a flexible framework that allows Diageo to pilot and scale circular packaging in an expected 18 markets in the next three years. The collaboration will initially be across Diageo’s Gordon’s gin, Captain Morgan rum and Smirnoff vodka. The global agreement follows the success of Diageo’s ongoing ecoSPIRITS programme in Indonesia with Smirnoff, which started in 2022 and is now active in 38 bars.

Diageo has a long history of innovation within technological and packaging formats and has been distributing Guinness in kegs since 1749. The innovative ecoSPIRITS technology will enable Diageo spirits to be distributed in a 4.5L ecoTOTE, which functions like a keg. It will provide a closed loop circular economy system; once the ecoTOTE is empty it will be collected and taken to offsite facilities, where it will be cleaned and refilled with the same spirit before being distributed and used again.

The collaboration is expected to deliver sustainability benefits to Diageo with reductions in carbon emissions and waste with the exact figures to be confirmed on conclusion of the three year period. The ecoTOTEs are designed to be used up to 150 times and are expected to eliminate the use of up to 1,000 glass bottles over their lifespan. There is also an anticipated carbon footprint benefit after the sixth use, compared to that volume of liquid in 70cl glass bottles.

EcoTote and Smirnoff bottle

Ewan Andrew, President, Global Supply Chain & Procurement and Chief Sustainability Officer at Diageo, commented: “This is another example of a triple win where the planet, consumers and Diageo will all benefit. We will be able to reduce both carbon and cost and the pubs and bars will benefit from the ease of having reusable spirits packaging.”

The first markets in the global agreement are expected to go live in 2024. This is a step towards Diageo’s goal of reducing carbon emissions across the supply chain by 50% by 2030 and reaching net zero by 2050.

Paul Gabie, CEO of ecoSPIRITS, commented: “ecoSPIRITS’ mission is to end single use glass in the spirits and wine industry. For the circular economy to achieve global scale, innovators like ecoSPIRITS need the support of industry leaders like Diageo in catalysing the linear to circular packaging transition. As such, this new global partnership is a significant milestone for ecoSPIRITS and our journey to a circular future. We are grateful to our partners at Diageo for the seriousness of their commitment to a more sustainable and inclusive world.”

Diageo first started working with ecoSPIRITS through the Diageo Sustainable Solutions programme in 2021. The programme aims to find technology innovators that can bridge the innovation gap across Diageo’s supply chain to help the company reach its ESG targets.


About Diageo

Diageo is a global leader in beverage alcohol with an outstanding collection of brands across spirits and beer categories. These brands include Johnnie Walker, Crown Royal, J&B and Buchanan’s whiskies, Smirnoff, Cîroc and Ketel One vodkas, Captain Morgan, Baileys, Don Julio, Tanqueray and Guinness.

Diageo is a global company, and our products are sold in more than 180 countries around the world. The company is listed on both the London Stock Exchange (DGE) and the New York Stock Exchange (DEO). For more information about Diageo, our people, our brands, and performance, visit us at www.diageo.com. Visit Diageo’s global responsible drinking resource, www.DRINKiQ.com for information, initiatives, and ways to share best practice.

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About ecoSPIRITS

ecoSPIRITS is a circular economy technology company that has developed the world’s first low carbon, low waste distribution technology for premium spirits and wine. Our patent-pending closed loop system nearly eliminates all packaging waste in the supply chain. By dramatically reducing packaging and transport, ecoSPIRITS provides both a powerful cost advantage and a transformative carbon footprint reduction. Founded in Singapore in 2018, the ecoSPIRITS technology is now available in more than 23 countries across Asia Pacific, Europe and the Americas. More than 2,000 leading bars, restaurants, hotels and retailers have adopted the technology, including Michelin-starred restaurants, World’s 50 Best and Asia’s 50 Best bars and iconic hotels. ecoSPIRITS is now rapidly building a global network of closed loop service, with coverage to grow to 27 countries worldwide by early 2024. Together with our brand partners, importers, distributor, wholesalers, venues, and retailers, we are already making a difference. Each year, ecoSPIRITS and our partners are eliminating hundreds of tons of single use glass waste, planting tens of thousands of trees, and inspiring others to change. For more information, visit www.ecospirits.global.