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REUSE is on the rise – even during pandemic

When you hear of the plastic pollution flood during the pandemic, how do you feel? Possibly sad, upset, powerless or all of the above. Well, no wonder. An estimated 3,4 billion[1] facemasks and 2,2 billion gloves are being thrown away each day. Unfortunately, a shocking amount ends up in the environment and the oceans.

Photo by Brian Yurasits on Unsplash

But instead of worrying, let’s rather offset the bad news with something positive: REUSE around the world is on the rise!

Here are 5 examples to cheer you up:

1. Dozens of new bulk shops have popped up in Germany

Despite of the pandemic, 70 new package-free stores opened in Germany during 2020. There are currently 380 unpackaged shops listed in the association “Unverpackt Verband”[2], and another 266 are in the planning stage. In the meantime, the package-free range is also taking up more and more space in German supermarkets.

Berliner package-free shop Original Unverpackt (Photo by Original Unverpackt)

2. France calls for obligatory package-free corners in supermarkets

In France, a new law is under debate in favour of packaging reuse. The law requires that by 2030, all stores over 400 m2 dedicate a fifth of their shelf space to refill stations. [3] The French senate will discuss the new law in May – so, fingers crossed!

3. Almost 300 million people can use a deposit system for bottles

As reported by Reloop platform last December, 291 million people globally have access to a backup system for plastic bottles. [4] By the end of 2023, another 207 million are expected to join!

Photo by Arshad Pooloo on Unsplash

4. New EU laws encourage member states to reuse

EU law already requires states to reach a recycling rate of 70% of all packaging by 2030.[5] By adopting reuse systems, countries can decrease their recycling target by up to 5%. The future for reusable packaging looks bright: the EU’s Circular Economy Action Plan promises a review of EU packaging waste laws, which will likely include new incentives for reuse and further restrictions on single-use packaging.[6]

5. More global brands show interest in MIWA

Also we in MIWA are feeling good vibes :) The interest in our technology is sharply rising. We are excited to be currently negotiating with several global brands and large retailers. New pilot operations are currently running in 5 countries. Our partners are all over Europe and have expanded to the USA.

A MIWA smart module in a Swiss Nestlé shop (Photo by MIWA Technologies, a.s.)

So heads up! The signs are clear that REUSE is about to join the mainstream :)

 

[1]https://www.nationalgeographic.co.uk/environment-and-conservation/2021/04/how-to-stop-discarded-face-masks-from-polluting-the-planet

[2] https://www.lzdirekt.de/stores/news/unverpackt-trend-394

[3] https://www.greenqueen.com.hk/french-supermarkets-to-phase-out-plastic-packaging-with-refill-stations/

[4] https://www.reloopplatform.org/reloops-global-deposit-book-2020/

[5] https://ec.europa.eu/environment/topics/waste-and-recycling/packaging-waste_en

[6] https://ec.europa.eu/environment/strategy/circular-economy-action-plan_en

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