CooperVision forms plastic neutral partnership

The initiative with Plastic Bank offsets the weight of plastic in every pack of CooperVision’s one-day contact lenses distributed in the UK and Ireland with credits funding the reprocessing of plastic waste

CooperVision team

CooperVision has made its one-day contact lenses distributed in the UK and Ireland plastic-neutral through a partnership with the social enterprise, Plastic Bank

Plastic Bank creates ethical recycling ecosystems in coastal communities, enabling the reprocessing of plastic waste to be introduced back into the supply chain, while supporting the individuals who collect the materials.

Under the new initiative, for every box of CooperVision one-day contact lenses distributed in the UK and Ireland, the company will purchase credits that fund the collection, processing and reuse of general plastic waste that is equal to the weight of the plastic used in its one-day contact lenses and packaging.

Doug Bairner, CooperVision country manager for the UK and Ireland, explained that the new initiative forms part of the company’s “holistic approach” to sustainability, adding to previous projects to build sustainable manufacturing and operations.

“Plastic plays a critical role in the hygienic delivery and sterile protection of our contact lenses, and how the plastic is managed is important to us,” Bairner said.

Research by CooperVision reveals that sustainability is a growing priority for consumers, along with concern around the management of plastic waste, with a 2021 survey revealing that 85% of wearers agree that keeping plastic out of the oceans is important to them.

The survey also found that 93% of contact lens wearers surveyed would choose a plastic neutral contact lens over a comparable non-plastic neutral lens – assuming both were recommended by their eye care professional.

All CooperVision one-day contact lens brands in the UK and Ireland are included in the initiative. There is no action that eye care professionals or consumers would need to take through the initiative, with the company explaining that “anyone who recommends or wears the lenses is participating.”

David Katz, founder and CEO of Plastic Bank, explained that the social enterprise aims to “empower the regenerative society while improving the lives of collector communities,” adding that the initiative with CooperVision provides the opportunity to “make meaningful environmental, social and economic impact.”

Bairner concluded: “Plastic neutrality is not an endpoint; it is another milestone in CooperVision’s journey to continuing to make a positive impact on the environment.”