A Queenstown brewery has become the first in New Zealand to use an environmentally-friendly six-pack ring on its canned beer.

Altitude Brewing will sell its IPA, Mischievous Kea, using the E6PR (Eco Six Pack Ring) - a 100% plastic-free, biodegradable, compostable six-pack ring.

The product was created in 2017 as a way of reducing the enormous quantity of plastic waste degrading the world's oceans.

It is now used by several craft brewers worldwide, but Altitude Brewing managing director Eddie Gapper said his brewery was the first to use them in New Zealand.

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The E6PR is made from by-product waste and other compostable materials.

When disposed of properly at a compostable facility, it will degrade in days.

And when left out in open land or a water system, it will degrade in a matter of weeks. It does not harm any wildlife that eats it.