Food delivery service Uber Eats has announced a multi-year partnership with environmental organisation Planet Ark designed to help Australian restaurants move towards more sustainable packaging.
The company, which aims to transition restaurant merchants to reusable, recyclable, or compostable packaging options by 2030, begins with consultation on a framework developed by the University of Technology Sydney’s Institute for Sustainable Futures.
The peer-reviewed framework identifies whether a restaurant’s packaging meets certain sustainability criteria, including what is considered reusable, recyclable or compostable within the framework.
Uber Eats also announced up to $13 million in funding over the next three years to stimulate more sustainable packaging uptake through programmes and subsidies – this follows a $1 million pilot scheme in 2023 helping restaurants purchase more sustainable packaging through packaging partner Detpak..
The General Manager Uber Eats ANZ Bec Nyst said: “We’ve already seen the incredible impact our technology can have on the restaurant ecosystem.
“Since making cutlery opt-in, rather than being included by default, we estimate eaters have helped reduce the equivalent weight of four jumbo jets worth of plastic forks, spoons and the like ending up in Australian landfill.”
Nyst said the company was identifying additional system changes to accelerate the uptake of more sustainable packaging options, leveraging its scale and relationships with suppliers to improve the unit economics on more sustainable packaging.
The company is considering rewarding restaurants investing in sustainable packaging with enhanced visibility on the Uber Eats platform.
Uber Eats is has more than 50,000 restaurant partners and millions of people use its platform each month.
The partnership and funding commitment was unveiled at the Palm House in Sydney’s Botanic Gardens (pictiured), and was catered by restaurants Lox in a Box and Cali Press that have taken steps to improve the packaging they use across their businesses.
Piucture: Uber Eats launch