Ministry for Environment urges more reusable packaging in catering

30 June 2022
Hamburg's to-go sector booming - reusable pool solutions to cut waste

Jens Kerstan, Senator for the Environment, Wilfried Baur, Vice President of the Chamber of Commerce, presented Monday (June 27, 2022) sustainable and pooled reusable waste systems to representatives of the catering and retail sector in the Chamber of Commerce. The event comes after delivery services and to-go food triggered a sharp rise in disposable packaging during the pandemic.

Boosting acceptance of reusables

Reusable pool solutions by Faircup, Recircle, Recup, Relevo, Tiffin Loop and Vytal were among those presented to delegates as alternatives to energy-intense, single-use packaging. Ideally, customers will soon be able to use their own containers to take away products from a restaurant, café or delivery service. Alternatively, they can pay a deposit on reusable packaging and return it later to a pariticipating restaurant. "We are offering wide-ranging support to the restaurant industry to make this standard across Hamburg," said Kerstan. An information campaign will be launched to highlight long-term, intelligent and reusable solutions. The campaign comes after an amendment to the Packaging Act under which reusable systems will be mandatory across Germany's catering industry from 2023.

Saving resources, avoiding waste, protecting the environment

Reusable systems are crucial to the battle against increasingly scarce resources and global warming, said Baur, adding: "Hamburg has set itself the goal of becoming climate-neutral by 2040. Retail and catering businesses can make a significant contribution to that goal." This latest initiative ties in with the ministry's "Kehr.Wieder" campaign which has boosted the use of reusable coffee beakers since 2018. Customers who bring their own cups to the participating shops can save between 10 and 30 per cent of the price. 

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