Amid Corona 19, the food delivery market has recently grown to 10 trillion won per year.
As a result, the number of disposable items increased.
So, some delivery brokers recently revealed that they have introduced recyclable delivery containers in consideration of the environment, and we interviewed whether it is really recyclable.
Reporters Deok-Hyun Kim and Se-man Jang will deliver.
<Reporter Kim Deok-Hyun>
Korea's first and second-largest delivery brokerage apps,'Nation of Delivery' and'Yogiyo', have been promoting that they have introduced'eco-friendly delivery containers' since 2019.
They reduced the plastic weight of the container by up to half, and instead mixed natural ingredients such as coconut shells to make it biodegradable in soil or water.
These containers they sell to their restaurants are marked with the Eco-Friendly Mark and the Recycle Circulation Mark.
I went to a recycling company to see if the containers were actually being recycled.
Plastic waste is usually spilled into the water during the sorting process, and only those floating on the water are recycled, and those that sink due to high impurities are treated as waste.
Most of the containers that brokers say are environmentally friendly are incinerated instead of being recycled as they sink in water.
[Flood Soo-yeol/Director of Resource Recycling Socioeconomic Research Institute: When it sinks in water, it separates from PP, so it cannot enter the PP recycling process.
Rather, it can interfere.]
When SBS coverage began, Yogiyo announced that it would stop selling the container and review whether it can be recycled.
The people of delivery also explained that they would find a way to increase the recycling rate of eco-friendly containers.
As of the first half of last year, the average daily amount of plastic waste increased by 15% compared to 2019, which was largely affected by the large amount of waste in delivery containers due to the explosive increase in delivery orders.
The problem is that these delivery containers are highly polluted and vary in size, so there is a limit to increasing the recycling rate.
<Reporter Jang Se-man>
So, experts choose a system that uses multi-disposable containers and reuses them as a fundamental solution to reducing waste in delivery containers.
The people of delivery also announced last year that they would join the same trend, but what happened now?
The people of delivery signed a voluntary agreement with the Ministry of Environment in May last year to reduce the use of plastic.
The text of the agreement is to unify the material of the packaging container for easy recycling and to allow consumers to select a multi-disposable container that can be used over and over again.
However, the so-called multi-disposable container utilization plan has not progressed for more than half a year.
[Kim Mi-hwa/Chairman of the Resource Recycling Solidarity: Please keep your promises as we have not yet seen such efforts to expand multi-use containers...
Some startups came out late.
The company is in charge of lending its own dedicated delivery containers to front-line restaurants.
The company's employees pick up empty bowls from the deliveries, go through a cleaning process, and feed them back to the restaurant.
[Kwak Jae-Won/CEO of a multi-use container service company: We will reduce social costs, scrapping and incineration costs by using multi-use containers.]
Local governments also came to support, but the most responsible delivery brokers' efforts. Seems insufficient.
(Video coverage: Jang Woon-seok, Jo Chun-dong, Oh Young-chun, Kim Seong-il, Video editing: Kim Jong-woo, Jeon Min-gyu, CG: Seo Hyun-jung, Kim Jeong-eun, VJ: Oh Se-gwan, Shin So-young)
▶'Eco-friendly' multi-use container, business value?