A zero-waste program is bringing reusable takeout packaging to select restaurants and coffee shops in the east side of North Vancouver, B.C. Businesses in Deep Cove, Dollarton Village and Parkgate Village have been offering customers the option of using reusable containers through a company called Reusables, in a bid to reduce single-use plastic waste. It’s an expansion of a program that’s been running successfully at select locations in Vancouver since March, according to Reusables co-founder Jason Hawkins.
Hawkins says people can participate by downloading the Reusables app and signing up for a membership. Members can then request the items they are ordering to be packaged in stainless steel containers, which can be returned in 14 days to any of the program’s participating locations. “That’s what’s great about our platform, you don’t have to go back to the same [business],” Hawkins said. “So you get unlimited reusables for just five bucks a month.”
He says the containers are cleaned thoroughly before they are reused. According to Reusables, the containers can be reused about 1,000 times before being recycled. The concept supports a circular economy, wherein waste is eliminated or diverted from landfills as much as possible through methods like reusing, recycling, repurposing, repairing and refurbishing. Hawkins says the program has been a success so far, with about 30 businesses in downtown and East Vancouver participating since its launch.