Packaging Self-Regulation

UK Tour Operators Pledge to Move to Biodegradable Brochures

Tour operators have pledged to reduce their environmental impact by delivering brochures in biodegradable wrappers.

Cosmos and Avalon Waterways are to wrap 2020 brochures in compostable packaging from April or May. Chief executive Giles Hawke said the move was “part of a range of things we’re doing globally on sustainability”.

Cosmos is assessing the type of paper it uses and brochures sent in bulk will be delivered in either cardboard or biodegradable wrappers. Avalon is also removing all plastic straws and stirrers from its ships.

Hawke added: “We will look at how to present this in a more joined-up way soon.”

Audley Travel has also pledged to introduce biodegradable wrapping for its brochures, having done the same for its quarterly magazine Audley Traveller last year.

Marketing manager Cerie Powell said: “We are currently working to find an alternative wrapping material that will support the larger size and weight of our brochures.”

Pledges came after Travel Weekly switched to being distributed in a fully compostable potato starch wrapper from last week in a move sponsored by Tui.

Derek Jones, chief executive of Kuoni parent Der Touristik, praised the initiative, saying: “Great move, now let’s get all tour operators to do the same with their brochures. I’m pointing the finger at myself as well as others.”

Jones said Kuoni was “actively looking into alternatives” to plastic wrapping for its brochures.

Travel Weekly’s move to a wrapping derived from potato starch was announced in January at the Travel Weekly Globe Travel Awards.

Managing director Stuart Parish said: “We are delighted to be making the switch in partnership with one of the industry’s leaders in sustainability, Tui.”

Tui does not use wrappers for its brochure deliveries and plans to phase out brochures altogether by 2020. Chief marketing officer Katie McAlister said: “We fly the flag for innovation in sustainable travel.”

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