The Toronto Zoo has teamed up with food service provider Compass Group Canada to lower the single-use plastics used in its daily operations.

As part of the partnership, the companies have launched ‘Friendlier’, a reusable plastic container designed for use in the park’s foodservice.

Made using 24% less greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, the packaging has been initially rolled out at the zoo’s Africa restaurant.

Plans are in place to roll out the container to more park restaurants in the future.

To use these containers, visitors need to pay a $0.50 deposit, which they can receive back through the Friendlier mobile app or can choose to donate the deposit to the Toronto Zoo Wildlife Conservancy.

Toronto Zoo CEO Dolf DeJong said: “Your Toronto Zoo is working to identify and minimise the impact of Zoo operations on the natural world, ensuring a future where wildlife and wild spaces thrive.

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“We welcome this new programme which will reduce our environmental impact in our day-to-day operations. This partnership with Friendlier is a great example of working towards our 2027 Net Zero goal of 100% waste diversion.”

The initiative is in line with the zoo’s ‘TZNet0’ environmental sustainability commitment, as well as its ongoing wildlife conservation efforts.

It also highlights Compass Group Canada’s Planet Promise to achieve net-zero GHG emissions globally by 2050.

Friendlier co-founder and president Jacquie Hutchings said: “We admire the incredible strides that the Toronto Zoo makes to conserve wildlife and are thrilled to partner with them to help reduce their packaging waste. We believe that this partnership is the start of an incredible educational, and impactful journey together.”