IHG to remove 200 million miniatures to reduce plastic waste

InterContinental Hotels Group (IHG), one of the world’s leading hotel companies, has today announced that its entire hotel estate of almost 843,000 guest rooms will switch to bulk-size bathroom amenities, with the transition to be completed during 2021.

Building on its efforts to reduce plastic waste as part of a broader sustainability agenda, this pledge makes IHG the first global hotel company to commit all brands to removing bathroom miniatures in favour of bulk-size amenities.

Keith Barr, CEO, IHG, commented, “It’s more important than ever that companies challenge themselves to operate responsibly – we know it’s what our guests, owners, colleagues, investors and suppliers rightly expect. Switching to larger-size amenities across more than 5,600 hotels around the world is a big step in the right direction and will allow us to significantly reduce our waste footprint and environmental impact as we make the change.

“We’ve already made great strides in this area, with almost a third of our estate already adopting the change and we’re proud to lead our industry by making this a brand standard for every single IHG hotel. We’re passionate about sustainability and we’ll continue to explore ways to make a positive difference to the environment and our local communities.”

IHG currently has an average of 200 million bathroom miniatures in use across its entire hotel estate every year. As the new brand standard is adopted between now and 2021, the company expects to see a significant reduction in plastic waste.

This commitment builds on IHG’s pledge to remove plastic straws from its hotels by the end of 2019, and a number of broader waste reduction initiatives already in place.

IHG remains a constituent of the FTSE4Good Index, and recently joined the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s Circular Economy 100 network, signalling its commitment to working with cross-industry partners to build a more sustainable world.

Joe Murphy, Lead of the CE100, the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, said, “We welcome IHG’s action to reduce plastic waste through this new commitment. Achieving a circular economy will be a challenging journey, but by working together we can find solutions to design out waste, keep materials in use, and regenerate our environment.”