PARIS—In celebration of Global Handwashing Day, the Hilton Paris Opera will lead the European roll-out of Clean the World by contributing discarded soap and bottled amenities that will be recycled to benefit European citizens who are at risk for hygiene-related illnesses.
As the world’s largest soap recycler, Clean the World has contributed to a 30 percent reduction in pre-adolescent deaths from hygiene-related illnesses since 2009. Hilton signed a master agreement with Clean the World earlier this year making it the organization’s largest hotel partner and first hotel in Europe to become a partner.
When Clean the World set out to establish a presence in Europe, the U.S.-based social enterprise focused on cities where there is a high density of hotel rooms, a dedication to environmentally friendly practices and committed hotel partners. Paris became a natural choice for expansion not only because Paris is one the world’s top tourist destinations but also an early commitment from Hilton Paris Opera, according to the organization.
“Since 2009, Clean the World has distributed more than 700,000 hygiene kits in the U.S., Canada, and Asia, while diverting 3,600 metric tons (3,968 U.S. tons) of waste from landfills,” said Clean the World founder and CEO Shawn Seipler. “European hotels have a strong commitment to managing their environmental footprint and are always looking for new ways to embrace responsible. This expansion is significant for us, and we couldn’t ask for a better launch partner than Hilton Paris Opera and Hilton Worldwide. The timing of this announcement is especially meaningful for us, because today is Global Handwashing Day.”
Seipler says there has been increasing interest in soap recycling as awareness of Clean the World spreads through the hospitality industry. Among those championing the drive for the organization to debut in Europe was Hilton Paris Opera GM Sofia L. Vandaele.
“I learned about Clean the World in 2009 when I managed a hotel in New York City and implemented the program there in three different locations,” said Vandaele. “They offer a clever, inventive solution that reduces our landfill impact while also helping people who are at risk for hygiene-related illness. I’m proud Hilton Paris Opera is the inaugural Clean the World partner in France and on the European continent, bringing our global partnership to life in this part of the world.”
Hilton Worldwide is Clean the World’s largest global partner, with more than 560 properties participating in the soap and bottled amenity recycling program, “Our partnership with Clean the World is a testament to the efforts of our hotels around the world to reduce our impact on the environment,” said Maxime Verstraete, VP of sustainability, Hilton Worldwide. “We are very proud to see our partnership with Clean The World help expand soap recycling and hygiene to new territories.”
Soap reprocessing is just one element of Hilton’s larger global waste solutions program known as RePurpose, which focuses on eliminating waste sent to landfills. RePurpose provides resources that support Hilton’s global portfolio of hotels in their efforts to reduce waste and increase recycling of items ranging from soap to bed mattresses to food. Collectively, hotels have reduced waste by more than 26 percent over five years, achieving the company’s initial waste goal two years ahead of schedule.