- Uber Eats has launched a zero-waste and zero-emissions initiative to reduce plastic packaging and carbon emissions, the company said in a post Thursday. It wants to “end all unnecessary plastic waste from its deliveries by 2030.”
- The company will be offering merchants access to discounted “green packaging” around the world and access to grants for small businesses to purchase this packaging.
- This move is an expansion of Uber’s 2020 pledge to become an emissions-free mobility platform by 2040 globally wrote Pierre-Dimitri Gore-Coty, senior vice president of delivery at Uber Eats, in the post.
Consumers surveys revealed that 80% of eaters in the U.S. and U.K. would be more likely to order from an Uber Eats merchant that used sustainable packaging, the company said. But restaurants are concerned by the price tag of these solutions, with more sustainable packaging solutions costing 25% more than petroleum-based packaging, Uber Eats said. This disconnect created an opportunity for Uber Eats to partner with various sustainable packaging providers to offer a 35% discount on green packaging.
In the U.S., the company has partnered with Green Paper Products. In Europe, it partnered with Bunzl, Enviropack and Dinovia. Uber Eats said World Wildlife Fund and Closed Loop Partners helped provide guidance on which providers offer reusable, recyclable and compostable packaging. Uber Eats also said it joined WWF’s One Source Coalition “to advance policy initiatives that advocate for extended producer responsibility, environmental justice, and support of the global plastics treaty in the US.”
Through Uber Eats’ Grants for Growth program with Visa, small businesses can apply for $10,000 grants to put toward purchasing sustainable packaging. These grants, which began during the pandemic to help restaurants stay open, are accepting applications through July 7. Its partner, Hello Alice, will help determine eligible and deserving restaurants in the U.S.
“To address single-use plastic waste and its effects on the environment, we’ll help restaurants transition to more sustainable packaging in every city where we do business by 2030 through a combination of discounts, incentives, and advocacy,” Gore-Coty said.
In 2020, the company added a feature allowing consumers to opt-in to single-use cutlery and launched reusable packaging pilots in France, Switzerland, Germany and parts of the U.K. and the U.S., Gore-Coty said.
Consumers will also be able to select merchants that use green packaging in Amsterdam, London, Paris, New York, San Francisco and Taipei starting this week, Gore-Coty said.
Earlier this year the company also partnered with DeliverZero for a reusable takeout packaging pilot program in New York. This is the company’s first such pilot in the U.S., following a similar one in London.