SINGAPORE (December 06, 2023) – With the aim of eliminating single-use waste using trusted, data-driven reuse systems, Muuse announced the results of its first container rental system at Singapore’s hawker centre in late November. No less than 10,000 reusable containers have been used since the inception of their programme a year ago, with carbon emissions being reduced by as much as 80% as a result of moving away from disposable takeaway packaging. The company collaborated directly with eight hawker stalls, providing a centralised collection point where they tested patrons’ appetites for reusable containers.
According to the report, the programme has been directly responsible for the saving of 1.2 tonnes of CO2 emissions, a figure equivalent to driving 7,000km. Furthermore, the report states that if takeaway meals were provided in reusable packaging across the entire hawker centre, emission savings could be as high as 21 tonnes of CO2 emissions annually, which is comparable to 10 flights from Singapore to Toronto!
The report also highlights the potential for scalability of the project in the region.
Marc Allen, chief sustainability officer and co-founder of Unravel Carbon, said: “It’s a great result to be able to quantify the emissions impact of reusables and demonstrate that there are tangible benefits from a climate point of view, in addition to those benefits that come from Muuse’s work in circularity efforts.”
All containers used at the Hawker Centre were tracked using the Muuse smart platform. Consumers were able to borrow reusable containers free of charge using the Muuse mobile app. Each container is tagged with a QR code, which consumers scan to borrow, and they were made available at manned Muuse booths at eight locations at the participating hawker centres.
Customers are given 30 days to return their containers, which are then professionally sanitised, keeping with approved food-safety standards. According to Muuse, 99% of all containers were returned, highlighting the enthusiasm for the process displayed by consumers. In addition, reusable containers that met halal standards were directed to a separate cleaning point which ensures that the necessary halal standards are maintained for the consumers who require it.
Loh Chen Long, a hawker at the Hawker Centre @ Our Tampines Hub sharing his experience: “Initially it was quite a transition from what we’re used to, however using Muuse’s reusable containers in my hawker stall has been a great experience. We try to lead by example in reducing single-use packaging and my customers have been pushing for it too. For me, it’s more than just serving a meal; it’s also about contributing to a cleaner and greener environment for the generations to come.
Sharing his vision to eliminate single-use packaging, Jonathan Tostevin, CEO of Muuse, states: “We envision a world where reuse is not just a choice but a seamless and effortless norm. Together, we’re meticulously crafting every aspect of convenience in reuse — from our innovative products and user-friendly app to the intricacies of logistics and operations. Through this pilot, it’s clear that Singaporeans are ready for reuse. We’re pleased to see tangible results in reduction of waste to landfill and carbon emissions in a hawker centre. We hope models like these can be applied elsewhere in the country and across the region, helping us transition to a more sustainable economy.”
Muuse plans to expand this platform to other hawker centres, food courts and coffee shops across Singapore to help Singapore hit its Green Plan target of reducing the amount of waste to landfill per capita per day by 30% by 2030.