Packaging

Engaged Ethics

A key area of focus this year has been plastic and flexible film. Flexible film is used to ensure that food can be wrapped safely and hygienically, but it’s challenging to recycle and currently not widely collected by kerbside recycling schemes. We are working in collaboration with our suppliers to find an alternative and have joined the Plastic Pact, an industry body which aims to find environmentally-friendly replacements for plastic packaging. While we search for a solution, we have invited our customers to bring both their Hotel Chocolat packaging and packaging from any other brand to any of our stores to be put through our responsible recycling system.

Key achievements this year

Our vision

Packaging

Removed black plastic packaging from our range, converting 300 tonnes p.a to recyclable at kerbside. Meaning over 90% of our packaging is now recyclable.


Joined the Plastic Pact to collaborate in eliminating all non-recyclable plastic primarily flexible film.


Packaged this year’s range of Extra-Thick and Ostrich Easter Eggs in reusable tins.

For 100% of our packaging to be recyclable or reusable by 2022.

Our progress so far...

We have joined the On Pack Recycling labelling scheme. Our whole range is currently being updated to feature easy-to-follow guidance on how to reuse, recycle or dispose of our packaging. Just flip over the box.

Plastic:

  • We have joined the Plastic Pact, a collaborative initiative that aims to create a circular economy for plastic. It brings together businesses from across the entire plastics value chain, which includes the UK Government, to tackle the issues of plastic waste.

  • We are no longer using black plastic trays. Instead, we’ve switched to clear alternatives that are made from over 70% recycled plastics and can be included in household recycling. Alternatively, all plastic packaging bought from us – and other brands too – can be responsibly recycled at any of our 100+ locations. We are also working with our suppliers on creating more innovative, environmentally-friendly options.

  • All disposable cutlery and napkins provided at our Drinks & Ices locations are 100% compostable or recyclable.

  • Plastic straws are banned at our restaurant, Rabot 1745, our bars and our Drinks & Ices locations.

  • Both our paper bags and our cardboard concierge gift bags are recyclable. The materials for these come from Forest Stewardship Council-certified sources.

  • In 2018, we introduced a range of reusable 100% natural jute and cotton bags. Jute is still used as the natural fibre for cacao sacks to store and transport cacao beans.

Paper:

  • We’ve stopped using polystyrene fillers to protect products during delivery, which are not biodegradable or easily recyclable. Instead, we use corrugated paper that is 100% recyclable.

  • Almost all our card and paper is certified by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC). The FSC’s certification guarantees that the wood pulp used to make our card and paper comes from sustainably-managed forests. All the paper and card we use is manufactured and shipped within the UK, keeping our carbon footprint to a minimum.

  • We’ve saved 125 tonnes of cardboard a year by reusing all the cardboard boxes we use for shipping products to and from our stores. Our store teams unpack them, carefully break them down and send them back to the factory for their next chocolate trip.

  • We’re using less paper every year by switching over to mostly digital communication and invoicing for our guests and subscribers.