KFC, a quick service restaurant chain, has pledged to eliminate non-recoverable or non-reusable plastic-based packaged by 2025.


Image: A KFC outlet in Derwent Park, a northern suburb of Hobart, Australia. Photo: courtesy of Mr Stan Zemanek.

KFC has made a new global sustainability commitment to recover or reuse all plastic-based and consumer-facing packaging.

As part of its long-term plan, KFC will implement a sustainable packaging strategy in its restaurants, including development and adoption of sustainable packaging options, to avoid plastic packaging items.

The restaurant chain has framed a roadmap to achieve its goals, including collaborating with major suppliers and franchisees across the globe to detect plastic alternatives in each market.

KFC is focusing on various initiatives to meet its goals, including carrying out an audit of current systems with franchisees to detect plastic waste reduction opportunities and collaborating with suppliers to identify sustainable packaging alternatives for items such as straws, plastic bags, cutlery and lids.

The restaurant chain is also setting market-specific goals to reduce, reuse and recycle plastic items.

KFC will back franchisees to determine and implement their own sustainability agenda to meet the unique requirements of local markets and customers.

Various markets have unveiled plans to reduce the use of certain plastics, including KFC Singapore’s decision to eliminate plastic straws and cup lids in its 84 restaurants, KFC Romania’s and France’s common target to replace all plastic straws with paper and KFC India’s decision to remove consumer plastic bags from their restaurants and replace plastic cups, bowls, sporks and straws with sustainable products.

KFC’s parent company Yum! Brands also committed source 100% of fiber-based packaging from certified or recycled sources by 2020.

KFC has also collaborated with NextGen Consortium, which is a multi-year and multi-industry global consortium to enhance the design, commercialization and recovery of food packaging alternatives.

KFC CEO Tony Lowings said: “As a global brand that operates more than 22,000 restaurants in over 135 countries, KFC is in a position to have a real impact on how the industry approaches waste and packaging management overall.

“With environmental sustainability as a core aspect of how we do business, this commitment represents a public acknowledgment of the obligation we have to address these serious issues.”