Tim Hortons To Trial Reusable Containers

By Ben Hamill - October 29 2020

Tim Hortons To Trial Reusable Containers

Canadian fast food restaurant chain Tim Hortons is on a mission to reduce single-use waste. The multinational chain says it hopes to achieve this through a new partnership with private recycling giant TerraCycle’s Loop, a zero-waste platform focused on recycling and reusability.

The new program, a first for Canada, aims to give customers the option of paying a deposit in return for receiving their food and drinks in returnable and reusable containers and cups – food containers and cups that can then be returned to a participating restaurant or outlet to be cleaned and sanitized in order to be used again. Deposits are refunded upon return.  Also, announced the fast food chain, the goal is for the program to eventually benefit from several drop-off locations both at Tim Horton restaurants as well as elsewhere.

The popular chain already in February announced plans to give away nearly two million reusable cups. The plan however had to be paused due to the global health crisis. Tim Hortons say they hope to be in a position to relaunch that particular program in due course also.

Loop pilot-tests are expected to get underway in 2021.

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This Is How To Make An Impact

The goal is to really make an impact, said Tim Hortons Chief Marketing Officer Hope Bagozzi of the program planned in partnership with the prominent zero-waste program. And it’s the type of impact that will only be achieved by following a completely different approach.

This year’s Waste Reduction Week also saw the company announce several additional initiatives focused on the significant reduction of everything from the single use of plastics to sleeves to napkins.

Initiatives focused on improved sustainability during Waste Reduction week, which ran from 19 -25 October 2020, include:

  • Early 2021 will see significant changes made to paper napkins. New napkins already in production are being made of 100 per cent recycled fibre – combined with a 25 per cent reduction in the use of material. Once in full circulation, the new napkins are expected to save up to 900 tonnes of paper every year.
  • The use of plastics, too, will be significantly reduced. Since from January 2021 onwards sandwiches and bagels will be wrapped in fully recyclable paper-based wrappers, more than 460 tonnes of plastic are expected to have been cut from the production process by at least the end of next year.
  • From this coming November 4, all Canada-based Tim Hortons stores will halt the tradition of double-cupping. Instead, customers will be offered recyclable cardboard sleeves for all hot drinks purchased.

The Ultimate Goal Is This

The restaurant and fast food chain say that its newly ramped-up focus on sustainability is expected to eliminate the use of at least 200 million cups each year – a significant change indeed considering 200 million cups could wrap half of Earth’s circumference with Tim Hortons drinks containers.

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