To be plastic neutral means to recover and remove as much plastic in the environment as one uses. After a year of remaining plastic neutral, Shakey’s is signing an agreement with non-profit organization Plastic Credit Exchange (PCEx) to verify its plastic offsetting initiative. According to Shakey’s, they are the first foodservice company to seek a third-party certification for plastic neutrality to strengthen the plastic neutrality campaign they started in 2019.

“This is another stepping stone towards our vision of becoming a more responsible food company. In spite of the more challenging business environment, we remain committed to integrating sustainability in the way we run our business and will continue in this direction for the betterment of our company and all its stakeholders,” says Shakey’s CEO Vicente Gregorio.

PCEx helps businesses reduce their plastic footprint through its network of partners that recover, process and recycle plastic waste. It verifies the offsets (amount of recovered and removed plastic in relation to its usage) of a company based on global standards on plastic neutrality. What Shakey’s has been doing is prohibit the use of plastic cups and straws in its workplace as well as provide customers the option to not to use plastic with its “Opt Out” tick box on its online delivery platforms. They also offset their remaining plastic usage by recovering and recycling.

“With support from such business leaders, Plastic Credit Exchange has diverted more than 6 million kilograms of plastic waste from the environment and is making environmental protection real and sustainable,” says Oliver Sicam, strategy director at PCEx.

With the Philippines ranking third among the world’s biggest polluters, generating 2.7 million tons of plastic every year, the chances of producing more plastic waste could be higher than projected given the increase in PPE production and usage as well as the temporary closure of recycling facilities. Even the rise of delivery means that some food services have banked on plastic packaging and single-use utensils. 

Global sales of disposable face masks are set to increase from $800 million in 2019 to $166 billion in 2020, according to business consulting firm Grand View Research. Meanwhile, e-commerce is expected to accelerate the growth of the global plastic packaging market to $1 trillion by 2021

Despite the overwhelming numbers surrounding the world’s plastic problem, attempts to decrease plastic dependency matter now more than ever. Building a circular economy means to forward a model for sustainability—one that is inclusive and attainable.

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