December 2020 Environment Making a Difference

Making a Difference – Caulibox

Did you know that the UK generates 11 billion pieces of single-use plastic every year?

CauliBox is on a mission to reduce this number by offering takeout food in sustainable packaging. The company makes reusable lunch boxes that are affordable and also has a positive impact on the environment.

What if you can have the convenience of takeaway without the environmental impact of single-use containers? Our boxes can be reused more than 500 times – according to the Sustainability at Work research, 2014. “Reusable dishware will use far less energy and resources over its lifetime than its disposable counterparts. Even with the energy and water needed to wash items, the overall environmental impact is substantially less than single-use, throw-away items.

And did you know that 11 billion takeaway containers end up in the landfill every year? (@hellohubbub, 2019) and that only 1/3 of recyclable containers are actually recycled?

The waste produced chokes the air, pollutes the ocean, and poisons the Earth – there has got to be a better way. Our Caulibox scheme provides a hassle-free system that eliminates single-use packaging through a reusable lunchbox scheme.

What is CauliBox?

A lover of London street food, Jo co-founded Caulibox because of the crazy amount of waste she was seeing generated in her office each week from takeaway boxes. And so, she created Caulibox – London’s First Reusable Lunchbox Scheme.

Caulibox is a digitally enabled, reusable lunch box scheme which rewards people for being sustainable. Hoping to create takeaway without the throwaway, Jo’s mission is to make sustainability more convenient and accessible to everyone. Specifically, she’s aiming to save 15,000,000 single-use takeaway containers every year, by making sustainability the convenient choice. Just find one of their partner street food vendors, scan their Caulibox QR code when you collect your food and drop off your box once you’ve enjoyed your meal.

What has been your biggest achievement so far?

A widely recognized food waste and sustainability campaigner and entrepreneur, Jo has worked with corporations such as Unilever and Sainsbury’s, local authorities such as Camden Council, as well as numerous food enterprises throughout London to cut food waste and advise on sustainable business practices. And more recently, Jo ran a successful trial with the City of Westminster, signing up over 200 people to the CauliBox membership club, and saving more than 2,000 single-use containers from landfill in just a few months.

We are also pleased to announce that Caulibox was awarded two Innovate UK grants in 2020, with plans to launch a delivery platform next year.

What are the benefits to joining the scheme?

Unlike other schemes, CauliBox gives members boxes to use and then drop off at a collection point, where the boxes are washed in a commercial kitchen, and energy saving alternative to bring your own boxes.  The scheme also offers members incentives for usage with a points system, rather than a discount, where you earn points each time you use the service. The points can add up to rewards such as Tate Modern tickets.

What are the environmental benefits?

CauliBoxes are fully recyclable at the end of their life cycle. Resilient to heat, leak-proof and odor-proof, the tried-and-tested CauliBox can be used over 400 times before being fully recycled. This eliminates the emissions and waste from over 400 manufacturing processes.

Reusing containers minimises the need for conventional recycling, which generates as much as 67% of the emissions of virgin-materials through processing and re-manufacturing. They are collected and washed in batches in a commercial dishwasher, which saves resources such as water and energy.

How can I help?

At the moment, CauliBoxes are only available in London, but we are looking to expand into other food markets and areas. You can sign up for our waiting list at! Or if you want to recommend a business or a restaurant that may be interested in joining the CauliBox scheme, please do get in touch!

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