Learn More About Highland Spring's Commitment to Sustainability

Who are Highland Spring Group?

Highland Spring Group is an independent business and a leading producer of natural source water. We employ approx. 430 people at our four sites across the country.


Where does Highland Spring water come from?

Highland Spring water is drawn from our natural spring water source in the Ochil Hills in Perthshire, Scotland. Our catchment area stretches over approx. 2,500 acres of the beautiful Ochil Hills and is certified organic by The Soil Association. T

 The land has nothing but nature on it and allows the rainfall to filter naturally over many years through the rock to depths of up to 300 feet before making it’s way to our bottling plant and into bottles in it’s natural source condition.

Spring Water has to be bottled at source and we protect the product every step of the way.


Are Highland Spring bottles recyclable?

All Highland Spring bottles are 100% recyclable and we would ask everyone to recycle their bottles to give them another life.

 We have also launched a Highland Spring Eco Bottle range– which is a 100% recycled plastic bottle*, that is recyclable too!

 *The Bottle is made from 100% recycled plastic. Label and cap are not made from recycled plastic. Bottle, label and cap are 100% recyclable.


How do I recycle Highland Spring bottles?

PET plastic is 100% recyclable and almost all local authorities in the UK accept plastic bottles as part of their household collection scheme. Where they do not, the bottles can be taken to a local household waste and recycling centre. They can also be recycled in recycling bins in town centres and shopping centres.


What are you doing to encourage recycling?

As the UK’s leading producer of natural source waters, we, along with all users of plastic, have a responsibility to be a part of the solution to negative issues caused by the use and disposal of plastics.

We are taking a proactive position and recognise that more needs to be done to reduce litter, improve recycling rates and avoid plastic causing harm to our environment.

We are working hard to help consumers understand how plastic bottles can be recycled, through innovations like the eco bottle, and the contribution these products can make towards a circular plastic economy.

We are partnering with Hubbub on positive and engaging behaviour change initiatives, in Leeds, Swansea and Edinburgh, to reduce litter and encourage recycling of used products as part of our ‘Love to Recycle’ campaign.

For the past two years, we have been heavily involved in discussions around the introduction of a Deposit Return Scheme (DRS) in Scotland, England and Wales, which will reduce litter and increase recycling rates.

We are also working with industry to achieve a 90% recycling rate for bottled water and soft drinks packaging.


Why does Highland Spring still use plastic?

A lot of work at Highland Spring goes into thinking about the packaging we use for our water, and we have chosen PET based on the fact that, perhaps surprisingly, it is still the most environmentally sustainable option, all things considered.

PET is a strong, lightweight plastic, both virtually unbreakable and shatterproof. This makes it an excellent choice for natural source water as it is completely safe for carrying whilst on-the-go or participating in sporting activities. Its ability to retain carbonation and freshness also protects the quality of our water.

PET plastic is also 100% recyclable and almost all local authorities in the UK accept plastic bottles as part of their household collection scheme. Where they do not, the bottles can be taken to a local household waste and recycling centre. They can also be recycled in recycling bins in town centres and shopping centres.

We were also the first major brand to introduce a bottle made from 100% recycled PET. Our Eco Bottle range is 100% recycled plastic (cap and label excluded), while also being 100% recyclable. The eco bottle is available in a 50cl, 75cl and kids format, and we have also recently introduced a new sparkling eco bottle. Our glass sparkling water bottles are made of at least 80% recycled glass too.


Are plastic bottles single-use?

All our Highland Spring PET plastic bottles are 100% recyclable

 The term single-use is misleading – all of our PET plastic bottles and the vast majority of PET plastic bottles in the UK are capable of being recycled, then reprocessed to be made into other bottles, thus giving them another life.

 Bottled water is the lowest impact packaged drink in the soft drinks sector, whether judged by its carbon footprint or its water footprint, since there are no agricultural water inputs and limited water processing inputs.  It represents just 10% of the CO2 emissions of the soft drinks category vs its relative size of 20% of the volume.**


What are Highland Spring doing to protect the environment?

We are continually innovating to find and implement the most sustainable ways for you to enjoy our natural source water. This includes;

·        Continued expansion of our Highland Spring eco bottle range

·        Increasing the amount of recycled plastic in our packaging

·       Supporting initiatives which encourage consumers to responsibly dispose of/recycle their bottles

·        Working with industry to achieve a 90% recycling rate for bottled water and soft drinks packaging. 

·        Investing in our new rail freight facility which will enable the business to transport goods in an environmentally sustainable way, reduce our carbon footprint by 3,200 tonnes and remove approximately 8,000 trucks from the road a year.


Why is Highland Spring not using 100% recycled plastic across all of its range?

We are focused on increasing the use of recycled PET (rPET) in our products as the quality and quantity that we need becomes available and are on a journey to ultimately reach 100% rPET across all Highland Spring.

We have the opportunity to develop a truly circular plastic economy here in the UK. However, we believe there is much work to be done first on increasing recycling rates, recycling infrastructure and ensuring consumers understand that all PET plastic bottles can be recycled, giving them multiple lives, to increase the availability of high-quality recycled materials in the UK. If we can develop the infrastructure here in the UK to encourage even more recycling then re-processing back into base materials, these materials can then be made into bottles.


Why do Highland Spring not currently offer a refillable option?

Natural source water by law has to be bottled at source. Every drop of Highland Spring comes from the majestic Ochil Hills in Perthshire, Scotland, where it is carefully drawn from protected land. Highland Spring was the first bottled water brand in the UK to have its catchment area certified as organic by the Soil Association, so you can be sure every drop of Highland Spring water is just as nature intended.

For those who have reusable bottles and wish to drink Highland Spring, we offer a 1.5 litre option that can be used to fill reusable bottles.

Please remember to clean reusable bottles after each use, and remember that like any refillable bottle, they will not last indefinitely. Please also to remember to recycle them when finished.


Why should consumers choose Highland Spring rather than just turning on the tap?

At Highland Spring, providing healthy hydration in an environmentally sustainable way is our top priority. We are incredibly proud of the high-quality of our Highland Spring water, and the care and attention we take in our product and land.

Natural source water has a valid role if we are to encourage consumers to choose water over sugary drinks to hydrate healthily.

Natural source water is not chemically treated, tap water has to be chemically treated and heavily processed to make it safe.

Research shows consistency of taste and convenience are key reasons for consumers to choose natural source water.

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