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Accor Launches Industry First Solution to Eliminate Single-Use Plastics

Accor to Eliminate Single-Use Plastics

In an industry-first, Accor Greater China will replace single-use plastic bathroom amenities with a biodegradable solution.

The roll-out is part of Accor's commitment to reduce its impact on the environment and create positive, sustainable hospitality.

A launch ceremony was held in Sofitel Shanghai Hongqiao on December 2, 2020, with the attendance from representatives for Shanghai Municipal Bureau of Culture and Tourism Market Management Office, Accor management team, as well as professionals from industry associations and hospitality partners.   

In 2019, Accor committed to and delivered against the promise to eliminate plastic drinking straws, stir sticks and cotton buds. The next phase entails eliminating individual plastic amenities and cups as well as other single-use plastic items in guest rooms, meeting areas, restaurants and leisure activity areas to be achieved in the coming few years.

Accor is a signatory to the Global Tourism Plastics Initiative led by the United Nations Environment Programme to remove all single-use plastics in guest experiences from its hotels over the next few years. As a partner in this initiative, Accor strives to lead by example, drive action internally, share knowledge and initiate collaborations as a responsible industry leader. It is a significant step forward for the global hospitality industry and for Accor, which has been committed to sustainability for decades.  

biodegradable solution with Lanvin

Accor's solution for its guest bathroom amenities is to replace them with a biodegradable solution encased in chic ceramic containers that incorporate contemporary designs. The solution was developed with a recognized international company that specializes in travel and hotel amenities solutions. The biodegradable capsule which holds the products is made from renewable raw plant materials including corn and cassava. As it is  biodegradable, it is environmentally friendly with a lower ecological impact. The 290ml containers for shampoo, conditioner, shower gel and body lotion feature sealed polylactic acid (PLA) inner bottles to ensure the highest hygiene and practicality. This eco-innovation and environmental-friendly container was derived after a series of professional experiments, trials and testing conducted over the course of a year. This first of its kind solution is expected to help save more than 16 million of single-use plastic bathroom amenities bottles on average per year across Accor's luxury and premium branded hotels in Greater China.

Sofitel is the pilot brand for this new initiative in Greater China, with other Accor luxury and premium brands to follow in 2021. The initiative is in line with the Chinese Central Government's ban of single-use plastics as the country's active response to the negative impact of plastic pollution on health and ecology as announced in January 2020.

Gary Rosen, CEO Accor Greater China, said: “We are honoured to lead the market as a pioneer in identifying and rolling out this innovative and sustainable initiative in Greater China. We aspire to set an example as a responsible corporate citizen while positively changing mindsets by adopting the logic of reduce, re-use and recycle. Our non-plastic amenities solution underscores our commitment to the environment and the communities where we operate our hotels. It is a holistic concept that fulfils many criteria including ecological impact, quality guest experience and excellent brand alignment.”

Representative for the Shanghai Tourism Trade Association, Hotel Industry Division said: “Plastic pollution is one of the major environmental challenges of our time and we have an important role to play in contributing to the solution. We are glad to see that through the plastics ban initiative, hospitality companies and tourist destinations have creative solutions to innovate the way they reduce the use of plastics to advance circularity in our economies while reducing plastics pollution in China.”  

Sébastien Bazin, Chairman and CEO, Accor, said: “Our industry has a significant impact on the planet and we fully measure how key our responsibility is to create sustainable tourism for our employees, guests, suppliers, partners and host communities. We are proud that our teams in Greater China have taken a leading role to create unexpected solutions locally, and to inspire others.”

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