750 million plastic containers end up in the ocean around Mexico every year. This year, AB InBev’s Mexican beer, Corona, is adding to its commitment to clean up the beaches that are part of its lifestyle. It is cleaning up the ocean.
Corona has launched the Plastic Fishing Tournament with environmental organisation, MazConCiencia. The idea from New York agency, We Believers, asked 80 Mexican fishermen to compete to make the biggest catch – of plastic containers. The contest removed approximately 2.9 tonnes of plastic from the channel between Urías estuary and Stone Island around Mazatlán, Sinaloa. The tournament winner collected nearly 370 kg of plastic the day of the contest and earned $14,800 pesos, the equivalent of a month of average wages from fishing in the area. The second prize of 10,000 pesos went to a boat that collected 212 kilos and 5,000 pesos were given to one that collected 200 kilos.
Corona connected the other fishermen who competed with the country’s largest recycling company, Mexico Recicla, which paid them the same per kg of plastic as they would have received for fish. The company intends to use the plastic to make fishing tools and is negotiating a formal deal with the fishermen to continue working together.
Gustavo Lauria, co-founder of We Believers, stated, “Especially in Mexico, the combination of plastic pollution in the oceans and overfishing directly affect small local fishing communities. When fishermen turn to the ocean, they find way more plastic than fish, and the fish they catch are way smaller than those they captured a decade ago. That’s how we connected the dots to encourage them to collect plastic instead of fish, creating a new source of income for their communities.”
Each year 13 million tonnes of plastics are discarded in the world’s oceans, according to the United Nations. Corona is looking to continue the tournament idea in other markets for the rest of the year and into 2022.