ecoSPIRITS France and La Maison du Whisky’s new circular retail initiative offers a refill solution for premium and exclusive spirits in the retail sector and aims to align with French anti-waste legislation.

Limited-edition spirit brands have been developed especially for this collaboration, and the beverages cannot be purchased in traditional glass bottles.

Instead, they are delivered to retailers via ecoSPIRITS’ ecoTOTE format. Consumers can fill their own bottles in-store using SmartPour 2.0S technology.

To evoke the aesthetics of a copper pot still, the units have been produced in a bronze colour specifically for the retail sector.

Specifically branded reusable bottles are available in a 20CL tester size, 50CL, or 70CL. A label and wooden bottle cap – the latter of which is screen-printed with the ecoSPIRITS logo – can then be attached to complete the purchase.

Small batches of Compass Box Synthesis (Blended Scotch Whisky), Christian Drouin Verger Sauvage gin, Renegade Hope rhum agricole, and Amorik single malt whisky constitute the initial lineup of spirits. When stocks run out, they will be replaced with new special-release spirits, including seasonal variants.

This development marks the first time ecoSPIRITS’ closed-loop technology has been made available to European retailers and responds to France’s Loi AGEC anti-waste law, in which products must be accompanied by information regarding their circularity and sustainability.

Initially, it has been introduced in select retail outlets owned by La Maison du Whisky in the Paris region, although it will eventually be available to over 100 La Maison du Whisky-supplied outlets across France. It is set to be offered to other off-trade retailers in the country at the beginning of this year.

This collaboration also contributes to ecoSPIRITS’ ongoing trails of circular solutions for the off-premise in the spirits industry.

Constance Moreau-Luchaire, senior marketing manager and project management officer at La Maison du Whisky, comments: “In a retail setting, ecoSPIRITS will enable the offering of bulk spirits while placing at the core of the process: eco-responsibility, experimental elements, and very high-quality spirit in small batches.”

“I am thrilled to see the launch of this retail campaign, which will provide discerning consumers across France the opportunity to purchase wonderful products and contribute to the circular economy,” adds Iain McPherson, sales director, EMEA at ecoSPIRITS. “LMDW has worked with hundreds of on-trade venues in France to help them adopt ecoSPIRITS’ closed loop technology. And now, thanks to its hard work, the company – together with the ecoSPIRITS Product team – has developed a smart solution for the retail sector, which I am sure will intrigue and inspire customers across the country.”

The development comes after Pernod Ricard’s venture capital fund, Convivialité Ventures, took a minority share in ecoSPIRITS last year.

Soon after, Pernod Ricard outlined its sustainability-minded developments, including the removal of unnecessary box packaging from its portfolios, the unveiling of a glass flagon for its Royal Salute Scotch, and the creation of lighter, recyclable bottles for its Perrier-Jouët champagne.

Meanwhile, The Brewers of Europe argued in a recent statement that ‘overly prescriptive’ new rules and governance in the Packaging and Packaging Waste Regulation should not dismantle existing and ‘well-functioning’ systems. For instance, it states that beverage producers already collecting and recycling their packaging at sufficient rates should not be forced to adopt reuse targets, as it could threaten the supply of post-consumer recyclable material.

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