IHG ditches bathroom miniatures to reduce plastic waste

InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG) has announced that its entire hotel estate of almost 843,000 guest rooms will switch to bulk-size bathroom amenities, with the transition to be completed in 2021.

IHG currently has an average of 200 million-bathroom miniatures in use across its entire hotel estate every year. As the new brand standard is adopted between now and 2021, the company expects to see a significant reduction in plastic waste and builds on IHG’s pledge to remove plastic straws from its hotels by the end of 2019, and a number of broader waste reduction initiatives already in place.

“It’s more important than ever that companies challenge themselves to operate responsibly, we know it’s what our guests, owners, colleagues, investors and suppliers rightly expect.” Said Keith Barr, CEO at IHG.

“Switching to larger-size amenities across more than 5600 hotels around the world is a big step in the right direction and will allow us to significantly reduce our waste footprint and environmental impact as we make the change.

“We’ve already made great strides in this area, with almost a third of our estate already adopting the change and we’re proud to lead our industry by making this a brand standard for every single IHG hotel. We’re passionate about sustainability and we’ll continue to explore ways to make a positive difference to the environment and our local communities.”

IHG’s latest initiative is apart of a global trend for destinations and hospitality providers to ditch single use plastic. Even countries are getting involved with Thailand getting serious about tackling the impact of plastics on the environment.

In April of this year, the Thai cabinet approved a 2018-2030 roadmap to tackle plastic waste, which includes the goals of ridding Thailand of three types of plastic – microbeads, cap seals and oxo-degradable plastics – within 2019. Four other types of plastics will also be eradicated – plastic bags, foam boxes, single-use plastic cups and plastic straws within 2022.

Thailand’s MICE sector has also joined the cause, with Thailand Convention and Exhibition Bureau and Thai Hotels Association partnering in song to send a message to the MICE industry to ‘Say No’ to plastic.