Sodexo has made a commitment to ban the purchase of all plastic straws and stirrers, and will phase out single-use plastic bags and polystyrene foam items such as cups, lids and food containers by 2020.
The pledge comes after recent campaigning by the likes of David Attenborough brought the dangers of single-use plastic waste in the oceans to our attention.
Waste was identified in Sodexo’s Better Tomorrow 2025 corporate responsibility roadmap as an area that the company wants to make significant progress. Already the UK and Ireland business has committed to ensure that 70% of its waste is recycled or reused by 2020, rising to 90% by 2025.
“Prevention is a key step in addressing this issue and we will always endeavour to prevent waste where we can,” said Edwina Hughes, corporate responsibility director at Sodexo UK & Ireland. “However, where disposables are still necessary we will encourage the use of an environmentally friendly alternative. Any improvements we can make, we will make.
“This will not only help us meet our environmental targets but more importantly, it will go some way to reduce the impact plastic is having on the environment.
“Action is critical to ensure that we do as much as we can to improve the quality of life of future generations, which is why our work in this area does not stop here. Looking to the future, we are working towards a situation where all our packaging is widely recycled.”
Last year Sodexo became a supply chain member of the Simply Cups scheme, the UK’s only collection and recycling service dedicated to turning paper and plastic cups into second-life material. The company is soon to launch the rCup, a reusable cup made from used disposal cups treated by Simply Cups.