2007 - 2022

Crapitalism – a Rubbish Exhibition

11.irnbru“Crapitalism – a rubbish exhibition” opens at The Creative Exchange, Leith tonight Friday 17 June at 6.30pm by Leithers Don’t Litter who argue: “together, we really can make Scotland Brutiful.”

Food and drink companies hide behind corporate PR whilst ditching their minimalist waste reduction and recycling plans. As Gerry Farrell, one half of dynamic-duo Leithers Don’t Litter puts it:

“But it’s not just about deposit return systems – we have to drastically reduce the amount of plastic we use. Our oceans are choking in plastic. Marine biologists predict that by 2050 there will be more plastic in the sea than fish. The Marine Conservation Society just published an alarming report that shows a 66 per cent increase in litter on Scottish beaches from 2014 to 2015. All our big brands need to start using materials that do less damage. McDonald’s should stop using plastic straws immediately. Takeaway drink lids are even more dangerous. The “resin code” on all Greggs takeaway cup lids is No 6. This means they’re polystyrene, a notoriously difficult plastic to recycle. A NZ stem cell scientist told us she was shocked to find out it was still legal in Scotland. It poses a measurable health risk when we drink through it because it leaches potentially toxic chemicals, especially when heated.”

“That’s why today we invite AG Barr and all the brands in our “Crapitalism” logo, to stop trying to clear their social consciences by sponsoring 
litter-picks or “Cleaning For The Queen” (I imagine she has enough cleaners already). Work with us to make radical changes. Reduce your packaging. Use more biodegradable materials and please, please change your minds about a deposit return system for Scotland.”


According to Farrell: “The former Scottish Environment Minister, Richard Lochhead, wanted our drinks industry to add between 10p and 20p to the price of soft drinks, alcohol and bottled water – money you would get back, or could give to charity, the minute you brought your empties back. Instead, AG Barr have joined forces with Coke, Tennents, Red Bull and nearly all the big bottled water brands to lobby against any kind of deposit return system.”


Cleaning up our communities isn’t just about civic duty, it’s about corporate accountability.

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  1. Andimac says:

    I’m fully supportive of any measures that can be taken to make manufacturers/retailers adopt better health and environmental practices with regard to their packaging, including deposit return systems, even levying charges on companies who refuse to comply. I’m afraid, however, that there will be little improvement until companies are coerced into taking appropriate measures and they will fight tooth and nail to prevent that. Unfortunately, the consumers/public are, in my view, as guilty as the corporations. We (Scotland) must be one of the mankiest nations on the planet. Almost wherever I go, not just in towns and cities, but in the hills, woods and countryside, everywhere is polluted with cans, bottles, food containers, wrappers, etc. As well as the corporations, the public needs to be educated and, if need be, punished for littering. It’s no longer a case of some kids dropping sweetie wrappers – our country, our continents and our oceans are being turned into cesspits because of greed, laziness and selfishness. Good luck to the exhibition and I hope it makes a difference, even a wee one.

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