WWF and foodpanda Hong Kong to launch the first-ever closed loop reusable food packaging programme - ECF: Choose to Reuse



Posted 03 October 2022
(From the left) Nicole Wong, CEO of WWF-Hong Kong, Simon Wong, B.B.S., JP., Chairman of the Environmental Campaign Committee, Fong Kin Wa, JP, the Assistant Director (Waste Reduction & Recycling) of the Environmental Protection Department, Ryan Lai, Managing Director of foodpanda Hong Kong
© WWF-Hong Kong

8,000 reusable containers and 9 collection machines rolled out on Hong Kong Island


Acknowledging the volume of single-use plastic container consumption associated with food takeaway, with the support of Environment and Conservation Fund (ECF), WWF-Hong Kong and foodpanda Hong Kong proudly present the launch of ECF: Choose to Reuse”, the first-ever closed-loop reusable packaging pilot programme for delivery platforms in Hong Kong. In its pilot phase, foodpanda Hong Kong will provide 8,000 reusable food containers to participating restaurant partners. Users can choose the dishes with reusable container options and return the containers at 9 different collection points. The programme aims to  offer a more sustainable option to the people of Hong Kong, encourage the public and restaurant partners to reduce waste at the source, and create a more sustainable community.

Marking the launch of the programme, the “ECF: Choose to Reuse'' kick-off ceremony was held earlier today by WWF-Hong Kong and foodpanda Hong Kong at Central Market. Simon Wong, B.B.S., J.P., Chairman of the Environmental Campaign Committee, Fong Kin Wa, J.P., Assistant Director (Waste Reduction & Recycling) of the Environmental Protection Department, Nicole Wong, CEO of WWF-Hong Kong and Ryan Lai, Managing Director of foodpanda Hong Kong, officiated the ceremony and demonstrated the collection process for the first time. 

Simon Wong, B.B.S., JP., Chairman of the Environmental Campaign Committee, said in the kick-off ceremony, “During pandemic, consumers and restaurants have no choice but to use more takeaway services, resulting in a large number of disposable tableware. As a member of the catering industry, I am very excited to witness the launch of this pilot project, bringing a feasible solution to the industry and enabling restaurants to switch to reuse. I look forward to an increase in public awareness and a city-wide adaptation of this project.”
 

Fong Kin Wa, JP., the Assistant Director (Waste Reduction & Recycling) of the Environmental Protection Department, said “To reduce the use of disposable plastic tableware at source with a view to minimising the impacts of plastic pollution on the marine environment and human health, the Environmental Protection Department (EPD) conducted earlier on a two-month public consultation on Regulation of Disposable Plastic Tableware.   We received over 8 000 submissions during the consultation period, the feedback was encouraging amongst which over 90% of the comments supported in principle the introduction of legislation to regulate disposable plastic tableware progressively. To speed up the pace of reducing plastics, EPD is now preparing the relevant Amendments Bill to implement the first phase of control earlier.   Our plan is to introduce the bill to the Legislative Council for scrutiny by the end of this year or early next year.”


Nicole Wong, CEO of WWF-Hong Kong, said, “Plastic pollution is one of the most pressing global issues. To solve this complex problem and achieve our ‘No Plastic in Nature’ goal by 2030, we need to collaborate and drive behavioural change that will reduce plastic waste and help us transition to a circular economy. Over the past 40 years, WWF has proactively worked with the government and all sectors of society to achieve long-term conservation goals through decision and action. We all want to transform Hong Kong into Asia’s most sustainable city. We hope this pilot programme with foodpanda will showcase how collaboration can make an impact and bring long-term change to the catering and food delivery industries. After all, our daily habits impact our habitats – let’s move away from a throwaway culture and instead develop habits that protect habitats.” 
 

Ryan Lai, Managing Director of foodpanda Hong Kong, said, “As one of the leading on-demand online delivery platforms in Asia, foodpanda is concerned and dedicated to driving sustainable development in the industry. We have established our environment-first mission based on three key principles, including the reduction of plastic waste, the advocacy of a low-carbon living style, and the way to avoid food waste. In order to reduce plastic waste, we launched the ‘default cutlery opt-out’ function for our customers as early as 2018. Also, we have signed an industry-wide commitment to be a part of WWF’s Plastic ACTion Initiative and work collectively towards the vision of ‘No Plastic in Nature’ by 2030.  According to a recent survey by foodpanda, 57% of interviewed users have made it clear they would order more from restaurants offering sustainable packaging. The data pointed out that stakeholders in Hong Kong are proactively committed to pursuing sustainable choices. In the upcoming 11 months, we sincerely hope that more restaurant partners can be part of the program and let us join hands together to provide more environment-friendly dining options for society."
 

The first 9 machines arrive at prime locations in Hong Kong Island; Users can receive foodpanda vouchers for every returned container 

In the first stage of the “ECF: Choose to Reuse'' programme, foodpanda Hong Kong will provide a total of 8,000 reusable containers to approximately 40 participating restaurants, including local fast food chain Fairwood, Korean fast food restaurant Seoul Bros, chicken wing specialist Wingman, hearty soup specialist SoupDay, healthy dining KALE and Planet Foody, as well as TREEHOUSE which is the first and only restaurant in Hong Kong to receive foodpanda’s Gold level Sustainable Restaurant Certification, and more. The reusable containers will come in 2 different shapes and sizes (1,380ml and 650ml) for participating restaurants to use, ensuring more flexibility for different types of dishes offered.

Users can then choose the dishes with the reusable containers option from a list of participating restaurants when ordering on foodpanda. A deposit of HK$10 per container will be required once the order is confirmed, applicable to both delivery and pick-up orders. Users can then return the containers at 9 different collection points located across Central, Admiralty, Wan Chai and Causeway Bay. The deposit will be refunded directly and immediately to the user’s Octopus wallet upon returning the container. Reminders to return the containers will also be sent to users by foodpanda through email and SMS.

Furthermore, for every returned container, users will receive a HK$10 voucher# that will be automatically credited to the  user’s wallet within the foodpanda app and available to be used on their next order from participating restaurants of the programme. This will mean a HK$20 voucher for 2 returned containers, HK$30 voucher for 3 returned containers and so on*. To enjoy more diversified green rewards, users can also earn CW Points with every returned container at Carbon Wallet App to redeem free MTR rides, eco-friendly products, green beauty and dining coupons.

foodpanda will be working with gategroup Solutions Hong Kong Limited to clean and sanitise  the reusable containers. This cleaning process will strictly follow the Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP) program, which meets global standards on hygiene and safety. Christian Fischer, Managing Director of gategroup Solutions Asia Pacific said “We are delighted to be partnering with foodpanda on this very exciting project, and we hope that this will help further emphasise the importance of sustainable and environmental awareness.”

Christian Mongendre, Founder of TREEHOUSE, said, “It is more important than ever for food delivery platforms to consider how to place more focus on sustainability as we believe this sector will only keep expanding moving forward from the pandemic. As foodpanda’s first and only certified gold sustainable restaurant, TREEHOUSE shares a lot of values and practices with the closed loop reusable food packaging programme. As a result, we are really excited to be one of the very first partners of this campaign and help promote sustainable consumption on a much wider scale. We believe this initiative will be one that’s really successful and one that shapes a better future for Hong Kong’s dining scene.”

The pilot programme has officially launched and will last for 11 months in its first phase.  WWF-Hong Kong and foodpanda Hong Kong will continuously assess and review the programme and explore expanding to more locations in the future.

*Up to 20 reusable containers can be returned each time
#Terms and conditions applied to the voucher 

Time for a low-carbon lifestyle is now: Public awareness of waste reduction in Hong Kong has grown

Environmental issues are under the global spotlight, and consumer awareness about reducing waste at source in Hong Kong is rising in recent years. According to a survey by foodpanda, 57% of interviewed users have made it clear they would order more from restaurants offering sustainable packaging. Therefore, implementing sustainable operations is of the utmost importance for businesses. Following the launch of the “default cutlery opt-out” function in 2018, foodpanda also signed an industry-wide commitment to be a part of WWF’s Plastic ACTion Initiative “No Plastic in Nature” to reduce the use of single-use plastic. As of 1st of October this year, foodpanda has successfully saved over 65 million single-use plastic cutlery from entering landfill.

In addition, foodpanda Hong Kong has been working closely with WWF-Hong Kong to encourage and assist restaurants in implementing more sustainable measures, including launching the first Sustainable Restaurant Certification Scheme in Hong Kong last year. This scheme recognises and promotes restaurants who have been practising more sustainable operations. foodpanda has also banned and removed all shark, ray and skate products from the platform to raise awareness of conservation together with our restaurant partners. To promote sustainability education in a more lively way, Pau-Pau, the brand ambassador of foodpanda, will also serve as the Company’s ambassador of Sustainability and Corporate Social Responsibility, to encourage the public to achieve a low-carbon lifestyle with its adorable image. 

WWF and foodpanda  “ECF: Choose to Reuse” Machine Locations:

Central

- 3/F, One Exchange Square, 8 Connaught Place, Central (TBC)
- 1/F, Standard Chartered Bank Building, 4-4A Des Voeux Road Central, Central
- G/F, World-Wide House, 19 Des Voeux Road Central, Central
- 2/F Central Market, 93 Queen's Road Central, Central

Admiralty
- L4 Lift Lobby, One Pacific Place, 88 Queensway
- 1/F, Admiralty Centre, 18 Harcourt Road


Wan Chai
- B1/F, Lee Tung Avenue, 200 Queen's Road East, Wan Chai
 
Causeway Bay
- 1/F, Fashion Walk, Great George Street


**The ninth location will be announced soon via foodpanda’s social media and app. Please stay tuned!


For more details about Carbon Wallet function, please visit https://www.carbonwallet.com.hk/

 

(From the left) Nicole Wong, CEO of WWF-Hong Kong, Simon Wong, B.B.S., JP., Chairman of the Environmental Campaign Committee, Fong Kin Wa, JP, the Assistant Director (Waste Reduction & Recycling) of the Environmental Protection Department, Ryan Lai, Managing Director of foodpanda Hong Kong
© WWF-Hong Kong Enlarge