The hospitality industry has our work cut out for us when it comes to our environmental footprint. A 2020 WWF report identified plastic bottles, soft plastics, disposable foodware, and disposable packaging and containers as 4 out of the top 6 priority plastics we need to tackle.
Part of a multichannel approach to this problem, and the solution that is within reach today, is selection of more eco-friendly, biodegradable disposables. Disposable foodware in Australia contributes around 25,000 tonnes to our waste annually, only 2% of which is recovered. Disposable packaging and containers a further 58,000 tonnes, with around 15% recovered. Imagine if 100% of that was eco-friendly!
The good news is that we can reverse much of the damage already done with the tools we currently have. But we all have a role to play in order to get there, and we have to start now. The first step is to understand the scope of the problem, to acknowledge our impact, and to recognise that our selling and consumption habits need to change.