Industry and trade sector strives to reduce plastic waste

13:00 | 07/09/2020 Environment

(VEN) - Vietnam is facing environmental pollution caused by plastic waste with nearly two million tonnes of plastic waste discharged each year. To deal with the issue, the industry and trade sector is taking specific actions to implement the National Action Plan on management of marine plastic waste until 2030, issued by the Prime Minister in December 2019.

Biodegradable bags are widely used in supermarket systems in Vietnam

Enterprises combat plastic waste

General Director of Mondelez Kinh Do Vietnam Company Hemant Rupani said Vietnam’s nearly two million tonnes of plastic waste per year create environmental risks seriously affecting human life and health. In response to the government's call for Millennium Development Goals contribution, the company has regularly organized Green Festivals for pupils across the country with the theme “Plastic waste recycle and collection” to raise better understanding of the causes and consequences of environmental pollution.

“The company has set sustainable development goals, which include commitments to use all reusable packaging by 2025,” said Rupani.

Meanwhile, Nestlé Vietnam also attaches adapts its production and business activities to the goal of sustainable development and environmental protection. The company joined leading companies in the consumer goods and packaging industries to launch the Packaging Recycling Organization Vietnam (PRO Vietnam) in June 2019 in order to promote a circular economic model by making the collection process, product packaging and recycling more accessible and sustainable. Nestlé Vietnam has committed to use 100 percent of recyclable or reusable packaging by 2025.

In order to raise awareness and new consumer behavior for a zero-waste future, Nestlé Vietnam and its partner Saigon Co-op have just launched a series of activities called “Green Journey of Recycling Milk Cartons” at Co. Opmart and Co. OpXtra supermarkets across the country to collect cans and cartons. Nestlé Vietnam also signed a cooperation agreement with the Ho Chi Minh Communist Youth Union to construct 30 dynamic Vietnamese playgrounds nationwide using recycled materials from milk cartons to help children enhance their physical health and raise awareness of environmental protection.

Encouraging use of reusables

In addition to policies on waste reduction in production, distribution and consumption, the Ministry of Industry and Trade has also recently strengthened state management of environmental protection in production and business activities.

Accordingly, the ministry has inspected the compliance with regulations on waste and plastic scrap management in enterprises, industrial and handicrafts clusters; and tightened control over environmental pollution in accordance with Vietnam's commitments in regional and global cooperation mechanisms on plastic waste disposal.

Tran Anh Tan, Deputy Director of the Industrial Safety Techniques and Environment Agency (MoIT) said the ministry has formulated and applied policies and mechanisms to encourage the production and consumption of reusable products, develop plastic waste recycling, control and limit plastic waste generated by markets, supermarkets and trade centers, and encourage the development of decomposable packaging and nylon bags.

Tan added that the ministry has also instructed agencies and units under its purview to focus on emission reduction, recycling and reuse of the wastes generated from their activities. The ministry also coordinated with scientific research units to seek alternative materials to replace persistent and non-disposable packaging, plastic bags, and support production units in bringing these products to the market.

Domestic units have already produced and supplied various kinds of biodegradable packaging and plastic bags; and domestic products made from paper materials meeting food-packaging requirements such as paper straws, cups, plates, trays and direct contact paper.

Thu Huong