Creative Shootout winners launch campaign to make plastic waste a public-health issue

The winner of last years inter-agency competition, Wire, has launched a campaign to raise awareness that plastic pollution is a public-health problem.

The winning Wire team on stage during their Creative Shootout pitch last year
The winning Wire team on stage during their Creative Shootout pitch last year

The Scottish marketing and PR agency came up with the idea to offer free public 'plastic tests' to measure the level of plastic in consumers' bodies.

Environmental journalist Lucy Siegle and science/natural history presenter and biochemist Liz Bonnin were handpicked to be the first to receive the tests, due to their campaigning work in this area.

Their results showed evidence of bisphenols, phthalates and other related chemicals in their bodies – important building blocks in the plastics industry, which have been associated with a raft of major health problems.

Tom Hills, story and strategy director at Wire, said: "To watch an idea develop from something we'd pitched on a stage to something that is delivering the level of conversation that it has is great."

The campaign, for non-profit social-impact movement A Plastic Planet, began this month.

At last year's annual 'live' creativity show, finalist agencies had just four hours to crack a brief from the organisation before presenting their creative back to a live audience and judging panel.

"The Creative Shootout exists to shine a light on the extraordinary talent in our industry, while giving something back," said Johnny Pitt, founder of the event.

A Plastic Planet hope the test results and surrounding coverage will help put pressure on the government and manufacturers to dramatically reduce the amount of plastic packaging in use, after several cases of toxic chemicals were detected in human urine samples.

The organisation said plastic pollution is inescapable.

"It is time for the truth about plastic to be known, and it's great to finally have the first results of these toxicity tests revealed. We're calling for urgent legislative change to protect us and our children from the toxic effects of plastic," added Sian Sutherland, co-founder of A Plastic Planet.

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