Tipperary tortilla company Blanco Niño says it is the first tortilla chip brand in Ireland or Britain to introduce fully recyclable packaging for its range of corn chips.

If you’ve ever been disturbed by why crisp and chip packs are mostly marked ‘don’t recycle’ or ‘not yet recyclable’, you have reason to be. According to Blanco Niño, a typical crisp packet “takes hundreds of years to decompose and is a real challenge for waste management”.

Ireland generates around 265,000 tonnes of plastic waste each year, and less than one-third is being recycled, but the company’s new packaging, made from a plastic resin called polypropylene 5 which is widely recycled, aims to change all that.

It also has the virtue, said the company, of keeping the product fresh for longer.

Chief executive Philip Martin said: “I’m looking forward to unveiling our new recyclable packaging to our customers. It’s a momentous step for Blanco Niño in reducing our impact on the environment. We saw an opportunity to develop fully recyclable packaging and I’m extremely proud to say that we’re one of the first in our category to do so.”
The new packaging design includes a window, featuring “eye-catching stylized landscapes that represent key ingredients of each flavor”. The product range itself remains unchanged and includes Lightly Salted, Blue Corn (formerly called Ancient Grain) and Chilli & Lime. 

The company is a member of Origin Green, Bord Bia’s food and drink sustainability program and is committed to a number of targets concerning raw material sourcing, sustainable packaging, and energy, waste and water reduction. 

Director of community affairs Ruth Jenkins added: “For Blanco Niño as a brand, sustainability and doing the right thing has been a priority from the outset. Consumers are rightly demanding more sustainable products and we as a team are delighted to rise to the challenge. It’s certainly not easy or straightforward but our R&D process made it possible. I hope we can lead the way and others will follow.”

The company says that its tortilla chips are naturally gluten-free, vegan-friendly, kosher certified, and some ingredients come from heritage farmers in Mexico itself. They are stocked in SuperValu, Dunnes Stores, Fallon & Byrne, and independent fine food stores both here and in Britain.

Originally published at BusinessPlus