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Returnable Container as Delivery Model is the Answer to Reducing Plastic waste through the use of reusable tableware and & stainless steel

Product will be delivered to the point of use or sale with returnable container to promote recycle and zero waste from plastic.

Photo of Adisa Adeniyi
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It is clear the world’s ecosystem cannot support the amount of waste that we are generating. Recycling is generally abandoned in favor of waste-destruction. It is goal of this project to convince the world to start using returnable plastic packaging systems for take-away coffee cup lids.

The returnable plastic packaging are durable and can last for many years. The proposed take-away coffee cup lids being reusable, they help eliminate waste.

This project aimed at promotion of returnable container as a delivery method to the point of sale or use so as to reduce the plastic waste and increase the chance of recycling. This among other things will increase the chances of product pack with adequate number of reusable tableware and stainless steel tumblers that is expected to be returned to the manufacturer/distributor. Prior to the supply of product, price would have been paid for the product with deposit for the container. The deposit for the container serves as collateral in case the wholesaler/retailer/final consumer fail to return the container.

This is high time to starting campaign to avoid the usage of plastic bottles to provide drinking water during meetings etc., and instead, to make arrangements for providing drinking water that do not result in the generation of plastic waste. We can restrict the usage of plastic water bottles in functions and meetings to ONLY reusable tableware and stainless steel tumblers

Guildance Communality Development Foundation as part of its effort to make an environment  "disposable-free", there was ban on the usage of disposable water bottles during the just concluded widows empowerment programme with the theme ‘ reach out to the poorest of the poor’ on 13th May, 2017. The event witnessed the usage of reusable tableware and stainless steel tumblers. 

Participants were provided with refillable steel flasks which were returned after the program. It is estimated that these green practices stopped the generation of 5 metric tonnes of disposable waste.

How would the Idea Work?

This innovative idea will reimagine delivery model that works through the introduction of returnable container. Manufacturers of products using plastic packaging, plastic packaging manufacturers and consumers of final products have been taking into consideration to ensure that this new delivery system add value to each of the stakeholders.

Products will be repacked in such a way to accommodate large volume of product so as to save cost, ease delivery and avoid generating waste that can be avoided. For liquid products, packaging can now varies interm of size. The higher the size, the lower the price per liter. Meaning that consumer buying in bulk benefit from special discount and save cost. Manufacturers now sell more as the price of the products are now cheap, more quality and affordable.

Consumer education is another way to make this project to see the light of the day. Consumers will be educated through capacity building through workshop, television, radio and social media that is to be organized by Manufacturers Association, Packaging Material Companies and the Marketing Companies. Consumers buying the products with returnable containers will be well informed of their contribution to environment through waste elimination and promoting recycling. Consumers live now easier as looking for where to throw the disposable package to is not an headache but to return the container the depot/distributor.

How does this Idea redesign unrecyclable small format plastic items that often end up as waste?

Through the use of reusable tableware and stainless steel tumblers, small plastic like caps, coffee lids and the likes that would have escaped recycling will not be a waste again as the products are now packed in returnable container. In the same vein, consumer can buy the returnable container, and not necessarily buy each time he or she is to buy the product, the container will be exchanged with product just like refillable gas container or bottle of soft drink .

Which use cases does your Idea apply to?

This project relates to use case 3-straw and take away coffee lids and the geographical area is Nigeria. Implementation of this idea definitely reduce if not eliminate the number of plastic disposable items used in Nigeria. The use of reusable tableware, plates,and cloth napkins when hosting a party is an effective to the reduce the number of plastic that escape the recycling.

How do you envision scaling up your Idea?

This idea shall be introduced to the market places through testing during events, party, football match and so on. The only obstacle that is envisaged is stress to gather the reusable tableware and stainless steel after an event. It is going to be overcome by engaging enough staff to be in charge of recovering of returnable container couple with the fact that wholesaler/retailer/consumer have already deposited money and they can not afford to lose their deposit.

At what stage of development is your Idea?

  • Research & Early Testing: You are exploring an idea, gathering inspiration and information needed to test it with real users.

Please describe how becoming a Top Idea and working with the Think Beyond Plastics Accelerator Program will help to accelerate your solution.

Becoming top idea in a way is an opportunity to work with New Plastics Economy Accelerator Program, take this project to another higher level which in turn give opportunity for partnership, training and funding to make this project to seeing the light of the day.

Please describe from where your Idea emerged

This idea originated during discussion with my wife- Mr Ganiyu Wakilat Aderonke on finding lasting solution to small plastic items escaping recycling. After series of discussion, we unanimously came to term and appreciate the role that can be played through returnable container as a delivery system.

Tell us about your work experience

I am a fellow member of institute of chartered Accountants of Nigeria & have worked as an Accountant at Dana Group which one of the core products in plastic production. I am a researcher.

Please describe your legal and organizational structure

Guildance Community Development Foundation was registered on April 2018 with Corporate Affairs Commission in Nigeria.


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