Onboard every flight that lands in Dubai, Emirates Cabin Crew work hard to quickly separate glass and plastic bottles, before they are sent to a recycling plant in Dubai. The glass is separated by colour and crushed. This ‘cullet’ or recycled glass that is ready to be re-melted, is then sent to glass manufacturers in the UAE to include in their batch mix for new bottles.
The plastic bottles are cleaned, chopped into flakes, melted into pellets, and sent to manufacturers to make other plastic products. As a result, Emirates and Emirates Flight Catering divert thousands of kilograms of glass and plastic away from landfill each year.
The glass and plastic recycling initiative onboard was suggested by environmentally conscious Emirates Cabin Crew in 2019, as part of regular webinars and events where they are given a platform to share feedback and encouraged to share innovative ideas to key departments. The proposal was well-received and implemented within weeks.