Author: Liam Taylor
Earlier this year, the world’s biggest furniture retailer, Swedish giant Ikea, announced it would phase out all single-use plastic products from shops and restaurants by 2020. That means no more plastic sporks with your Swedish meatballs.
Included in the ban are common single-use plastic items such as straws, cutlery and cups as well as less-used items such as freezer bags. The retailer’s in-house restaurants will also stop providing plastic straws, plates, drink stirrers, plates and takeaway containers.
The ban is part of a broader sustainability strategy to become “people and planet positive by 2030”. Also included in the strategy is a commitment to purchasing 100% renewable energy by 2020 and only using renewable and recycled materials in products.
To reach these lofty goals, the company has already invested €1.7 billion (over 2.5 billion AUD) into renewable energy projects including installing 750,000 solar panels onto Ikea buildings globally.
The scale of the global plastic pollution crisis has become increasingly clear over the past 12-18 months, with research showing only 14% of all plastic in the world is being collected for recycling. Even more concerning is the dire warning that, by weight, there could be more plastic than fish in the world’s oceans by 2050.
Big businesses need to step up and say no to plastic if we are to address these issues. Ikea has chosen to step up to the plate. At Planet Ark we look forward to many other businesses showing the same commitment to our natural environment.
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Positive Environment News has been compiled using publicly available information. Planet Ark does not take responsibility for the accuracy of the original information and encourages readers to check the references before using this information for their own purposes.
Liam is Planet Ark's Communications Coordinator. Prior to joining Planet Ark Liam spent his time studying global environmental issues, travelling Southeast Asia on the cheap and working for a sustainable property management company in Bali, Indonesia.