By Hannah Page, Brand Lead at Belu Water
Wednesday 16th June marks World Refill Day – a day all about choosing reusable options over single-use packaging.
UK consumers are thought to go through a whopping 28 billion single use drinks bottles and cans a year. This realisation has caused many people and businesses alike to reassess their reliance on single use packaging altogether, with more and more making the switch to refillable and reusable options.
Why is reusable better than single use?
The biggest difference between the two options is how much waste is created. When something is designed to be used once, it needs to be recycled in order to get back into supply chains and be used again. Refillable bottles, on the other hand, are designed to be used over and over again, reducing not only waste, but the amount of raw material and energy used, as these ‘costs’ are spread across multiple uses. All of this combined, leads to reusable options usually boasting a lower carbon footprint than their single-use counterparts.
Plus, there are wider benefits to businesses beyond just costs and carbon savings. The Ellen MacArthur Foundation suggests that customer experience can be improved by enhancing the look, feel or functionality of reusable packaging (which can be more high-end as its initial production cost is divided over many uses). Not the mention the opportunity to build brand loyalty since nearly two thirds (65%) of consumers now expect to see ethically sourced food and drink, and around half (54%) want to find environmentally friendly packaging (Source: CGA).
But where do you start?
Water is a simple, but powerful starting point for businesses looking to move away from single-use packaging. By installing a filtered water system, you can offer chilled still and sparkling water on tap, with less waste, lower recycling costs and in many cases, a far lower carbon footprint.
Many Sustainable Restaurant Association members have already made the switch. Pure estimates that the water stations in their stores save at least 3,000 plastic water bottles a week, whilst The Pig have removed over 116,000 single-use bottles a year by installing filtered water systems. Tom Ross from The Pig added that, “It is only with affirmative action that we can make a difference. We all have a part to play.”
From restaurants to hotels, cafés and caterers, there’s an option out there to make a real and lasting difference for people and planet through something as simple as water. Have you got the bottle to make the change this Refill Day?
Every Belu refill serves a real purpose. We give our profits for WaterAid and bring a more sustainable future to the table.