Hospitality New Zealand joins the Glass Packaging Forum

Schnappa Rock bar staffer Taylah Going does her bit to ensure the Tutukaka restaurant and bar’s glass bottles and jars get recycled rather than end up in landfill.

One of New Zealand’s biggest trade associations is building on its sustainability efforts by joining forces with the Glass Packaging Forum.

Hospitality New Zealand has signed up as a member, making it the largest member association to be part of the Forum.

Hospitality NZ board member and sustainability champion, Nick Keene says their membership will enable the association to offer greater value to its members with practical resources to achieve better recycling rates.

“This is an acknowledgement of our industry wanting to improve its glass recycling. A huge number of our members have a strong desire to reduce their carbon footprint. This relationship with the GPF will give us a better tool kit to give to our members,” he says.

Glass Packaging Forum scheme manager Dominic Salmon says the 3,000 members of Hospitality NZ represent a significant volume of potential glass for recycling. The Forum is therefore very keen to work with the hospitality industry, and recognises it has unique barriers to overcome, he says.

“Space constraints, affordability and staff turnover are some of the main issues to address. However, we believe these are things that can be overcome by working collectively.”

Through their membership Hospitality NZ will have access to the wider Glass Packaging Forum network, educational resources as well as exposure on how to reduce waste, Dominic says. “We are also keen to encourage food hubs or clusters of bars to work together and consider applying for Forum grant funding to purchase joint recycling bins which will help them maximise recycling volume and minimise space constraints.”

The desire for greater sustainability goes beyond business owners, Nick says. Staff and those attracted to work in the hospitality industry want to work for employers which are making genuine efforts to reduce their environmental impact, he says.

“The public are also more and more aware of the sustainability practices of the restaurants, hotels and bars they patronise. For business owners it is about a social licence to operate.”