Singling out plastic

George Sell By George Sell
Uploaded 11 September 2019

Isn't it incredible that Marriott and IHG's recent decisions to phase out single use plastic toiletry bottles will prevent a combined 700 million plastic items being sent to landfill each year?

700 million from just two players, albeit major ones, in a single industry!

It is an eye opening reminder of the sheer scale of the plastic problem. Hospitality is still needlessly using huge numbers of unnecessary single use packaging items, not only in toiletries but in the F&B space too - sauce sachets, butter wraps, plastic straws and so on. It's great to see the industry giants taking action, and it is down to every company in the space to do the same.

Things are starting to move in the right direction - Whitbread, the owner of brands such as Premier Inn and Beefeater, has appointed an industry rising star Olivia Murphy as sustainability manager.

She has some good advice for hotels who might be in doubt about how to start their sustainability journey: "You can't do everything at once, so don't think that trying to be a force for good in a specific space won't make a huge difference. You have to start somewhere and not be afraid to make commitments or speak up about an opportunity that you find exciting because, more often than not, someone else will share that passion."

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