Qantas replacing plastic with wooden cutlery

Mattg

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Qantas will phase out single-use plastic cutlery from its flights, replacing it with FSC-accredited wooden cutlery packs. This will be brought in on QLD flights first, then across the rest of the network from next month.

Apparently other changes to remove single-use plastic items (such as plastic butter packs in lounges) have had to be delayed due to covid.


The move is part of the airline’s commitment to sustainability and waste reduction. In Q1 2020, Qantas introduced bamboo stirrers and compostable hot cups, eliminating over 5.5 million single-use plastic inflight items. This followed the removal of plastic straws across the network in 2019.

Qantas Group was set to achieve its waste and single-use plastic targets prior to the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020.

Qantas is reviewing and updating its waste strategy in light of new COVID-19 operating conditions that has seen a temporary requirement for single-use items for the safety and wellbeing of our customers (like butter packs in lounges) and continues to work with airline partners and manufacturers to find green alternatives.
 

henrus

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This is great but what they really need to stop with is those tiny nu water bottles. On longer flights and when I'm thirsty I find myself with a small collection of them towards the end of the flight.

Virgin Australia and Air New Zealand have found a way to use cups instead (mind blown)🤯 and on most flights will happily refill the same cup from a larger bottle (you've just got to hold your own cup out).

I don't think this is a covid problem because it's been happening well before covid and even in Qantas business class right now they'll happily refill glass cups, I guess COVID only spreads in QF economy?
 

jrfsp

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This is because of the single use plastic legislation being brought out by state governments not QFs own prerogative
 

Pushka

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SA banned many single use products a while ago. Long before the eastern states. And then came covid and plastic disposable masks. Sigh. I loathe the straws that Hungry Jacks have. Awful.
 
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Vic

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This is great but what they really need to stop with is those tiny nu water bottles. On longer flights and when I'm thirsty I find myself with a small collection of them towards the end of the flight.

Virgin Australia and Air New Zealand have found a way to use cups instead (mind blown)🤯 and on most flights will happily refill the same cup from a larger bottle (you've just got to hold your own cup out).

I don't think this is a covid problem because it's been happening well before covid and even in Qantas business class right now they'll happily refill glass cups, I guess COVID only spreads in QF economy?
Hmm yeah the covid related issue was specific plastic butter packs. You can't have communal butter for everyone to dip their knifes into is likely the issue, I'd guess.

Plastic bottles, just like plastic cups can be recycled. I've always seen the plastic cups, with less volume, on virgin as a cost saving measure.




Not to be a splitter or anything...
 

henrus

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Hmm yeah the covid related issue was specific plastic butter packs. You can't have communal butter for everyone to dip their knifes into is likely the issue, I'd guess.
To be honest I don't think they're trying hard enough when it comes to things like butter. I've been to plenty of restaurants that have bought out a small serve of butter in a ramekin. There is nothing stopping them from putting ramekins full of butter and jam etc in the buffet instead.

Plastic bottles, just like plastic cups can be recycled. I've always seen the plastic cups, with less volume, on virgin as a cost saving measure.
On many flights I've seen all trash just gets shoved into the same bin which makes me think there is little recycling going on (although I hope I'm wrong here). This is even worse on international services where all waste must be incinerated.

Qantas clearly acknowledge that the plastic bottles are not the best option as when they did the QF739 SYD-ADL "World's first zero waste flight" marketing gimmick they instead opted for biodegradable plastic cups.

Not an attack or anything but I find it's interesting you think the cups are a cost saving measure, perhaps Qantas (and their customers) feels the same way hence they've retained the individual plastic bottles or maybe it comes down to trying to speed up service on shorter flights? Perhaps this is something for the next RedPlanet research survey.
 

TheInsider

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To be honest I don't think they're trying hard enough when it comes to things like butter. I've been to plenty of restaurants that have bought out a small serve of butter in a ramekin. There is nothing stopping them from putting ramekins full of butter and jam etc in the buffet instead.


On many flights I've seen all trash just gets shoved into the same bin which makes me think there is little recycling going on (although I hope I'm wrong here). This is even worse on international services where all waste must be incinerated.

Qantas clearly acknowledge that the plastic bottles are not the best option as when they did the QF739 SYD-ADL "World's first zero waste flight" marketing gimmick they instead opted for biodegradable plastic cups.

Not an attack or anything but I find it's interesting you think the cups are a cost saving measure, perhaps Qantas (and their customers) feels the same way hence they've retained the individual plastic bottles or maybe it comes down to trying to speed up service on shorter flights? Perhaps this is something for the next RedPlanet research survey.
Some international flight all just get burnt due to quarantine requirements, but for for domestic flights it's a little bit different.
 

Vic

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Not an attack or anything but I find it's interesting you think the cups are a cost saving measure, perhaps Qantas (and their customers) feels the same way hence they've retained the individual plastic bottles or maybe it comes down to trying to speed up service on shorter flights? Perhaps this is something for the next RedPlanet research survey.
Well yes, always an open question on whether the recycling happens.

In terms of cost saving, my observation is that small volume drinks cost more per litre than larger volume containers of the same drink. No doubt a production overhead for putting 1 litre into 4 bottles, versus 1 litre into 1 bottle.
Hence my hypothesis is Virgin save money on buying the water in larger containers. The cost of staff is a sunk cost, it does change whether they're sitting down the back or walking the aisle pouring water.
 

Ade

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FSC-accredited wooden cutlery packs

Personal opinion - hate the wooden cutlery. I have had some very bad experience using wooden cutlery and try to stay away from it as much as I can ...

Especially if you are a slow eater, the wood absorbs the moisture from the food and starts to impart it's own taste to the meal. I have a lot of meals where the taste of the food was altered because I also got a bit of woody taste.

Using wooden cutlery for some not so runny food - say cheese or cakes or omlette or sausages - fine ... but not for curry or soup or cereals with milk/yogurt etc ... I have also seen examples where the wooden cutlery breaks when trying to cut into a piece of well-done steak or something with a bone in it ...

Also, if you accidentally bite into the wooden spoon (and this might happen if you leave the spoon in your food for a while, the wood soaks in the meal), it might splinter and you risk swallowing the splinter, which may not make it's way through without bruising you tongue, cheek, throat etc ... Not trying to be against the wooden cutlery, but it's just not something I'd be very happy to use.

The idea of wooden cutlery "sounds" great, but I'm not entirely sure if the "experience" part of the meal is considered when coming up with such decisions.

I'd rather go back to steel cutlery - but it could be expensive for the airlines to maintain OR prevent pax from taking one home as a souvenir.

I'm not knowledgeable in this area to suggest an alternative to wooden cutlery, but I won't be happy when I have to use it.​
 
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dajop

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Personal opinion - hate the wooden cutlery. I have had some very bad experience using wooden cutlery and try to stay away from it as much as I can ...

Maybe it's time to BYO metal fork & spoon (not knives, for obvious reasons, and most economy airline food can be cut with a spoon anyway). :p ;).

Try cutting steak with a wooden knife and fork, as that's what you get in hotel quarantine (although metal teaspoon cut it fine).
 

Ade

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Maybe it's time to BYO metal fork & spoon
Or at least those sturdy plastic re-usable ones that can be folded into the palm of your hand ... I have seen those in BigW (or KMart) ?

Edit : found this on eBay for $5

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SA banned many single use products a while ago. Long before the eastern states. And then came covid and plastic disposable masks. Sigh. I loathe the straws that Hungry Jacks have. Awful.
Hungry Jacks have just started introducing sippy cup lids on their soft drinks - they work quite well after the initial shock of being sent back to toddlerdom lol
 

justinbrett

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Why don't they just use metal cutlery - much better for the environment.

SA banned many single use products a while ago. Long before the eastern states. And then came covid and plastic disposable masks. Sigh. I loathe the straws that Hungry Jacks have. Awful.

I rarely go there but went last week and got a biodegradable plastic straw. I like them, pretty much feels the same as the old plastic ones.
 

Pushka

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Why don't they just use metal cutlery - much better for the environment.



I rarely go there but went last week and got a biodegradable plastic straw. I like them, pretty much feels the same as the old plastic ones.
That would be better. The ones I've had in SA are very thick cardboard style
 
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