Globally, Hilton Worldwide’s program has resulted in over a million bars of soap being distributed to underprivileged communities since 2011.
Hilton Worldwide today announced that it has extended its global soap recycling initiative to all 10 of its Japan hotels. The program supports the company’s commitment to diverting waste from landfills through reuse, recycling and donations via its global RePurpose program, and enables Hilton Worldwide to make a significant contribution toward combating hygiene-related diseases in underprivileged communities in Asia.
The Japan initiative sees Hilton Worldwide partner with Hong Kong-based Soap Cycling, Asia’s first soap recycling non-profit organization, and JTB Trading, Inc., which sponsors the collection and shipping of the recovered soap to Hong Kong.
Timothy Soper, vice president, operations, Japan, Korea and Micronesia, Hilton Worldwide, said, “We are pleased to extend soap recycling to our hotels in Japan, and to be Soap Cycling’s very first hospitality partner outside of Hong Kong. Our collaboration with JTB Trading, Inc. also demonstrates how impact can be amplified with like-minded partners. This initiative reinforces our efforts to reduce waste output and strengthen communities – two core pillars of our global corporate responsibility strategy, Travel with PurposeTM. Through this commitment, we aim to increase environmental awareness and personal ownership among our stakeholders, and enable our guests to make sustainable choices when they travel.”
Soap Cycling thoroughly sanitizes, processes and molds the soap into new bars, and then works with a network of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) to distribute the soap to underprivileged populations in Asia.
Hilton Worldwide’s 1,000-strong housekeeping team in Japan has already collected 2.3 tons of soap from its more than 5,300 hotel rooms across the country since starting the initiative in October 2013. This contributed 20,000 new bars of soap, some of which were directed towards disaster-stricken communities affected by Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines.
David Bishop, founder and chairman of Soap Cycling, said, “Soap is a truly life-saving item. Research shows that simple hand washing in homes, hospitals, schools and elsewhere can save 900,000 lives annually by preventing hygiene-related diseases. Soap Cycling truly values the generous support from both Hilton Worldwide and JTB Trading, Inc.”
The hotels in Japan participating in the soap recycling program are:
•DoubleTree by Hilton Naha
•Hilton Fukuoka Sea Hawk
•Hiilton Tokyo Bay
•Hilton Niseko Village
•Hilton Tokyo Narita Airport
Globally, Hilton Worldwide announced its partnership with the US-based Global Soap Project (GSP) in 2011. Since then, well over 120 tons of soap have been recovered from some 700 Hilton Worldwide hotels and donated to GSP and other recycling organizations, creating more than one million new bars of soap for underprivileged communities.
Atsushi Iwasawa, General Manager of JTB Trading, Inc. said, “Hilton Worldwide is an important business partner for JTB Trading, Inc., and it is a great pleasure for us to organize the collection, warehousing and shipping of recovered soap in partnership with Soap Cycling. We look forward to stepping up our contribution to society by increasing soap transportation volumes over time, in collaboration with Hilton Worldwide.”
Hilton Worldwide is one of the first major multi-brand hospitality companies to make sustainability measurement a brand standard and to require performance against sustainability goals. Through its proprietary LightStayTM system, the company registered cumulative utility cost savings of US$253 million from 2009-2012, through a 12.8% reduction of carbon output, a 12.2% reduction in energy use, a 24.9% reduction of waste input and a 10.2% reduction in water use.
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About Soap Cycling
Established in 2012, Soap Cycling is a registered charity based in Hong Kong, and is the first non-profit soap recycling organization in Asia. Soap Cycling seeks to improve sanitation and hygiene in underprivileged regions, one child at a time. They do that by collecting and processing used hotel soap. These life-saving items then get distributed to underprivileged children and antenatal clinics in disadvantaged communities in Asia, and to support disaster relief. Soap Cycling is almost completely run by university students, who are given management positions within the company. By participating in the program, hotels are diverting tons of waste from landfills, and supporting vulnerable people in need. Please visit www.soapcycling.org or email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
About JTB Trading, Inc.
JTB Trading, Inc. is committed to providing high value-added services and goods that meet the diverse needs of travelers and the tourism industry. The company develops a wide range of travel-related business in 5 core areas including wholesale hotel materials.
About Travel with PurposeTM
Travel with PurposeTM is Hilton Worldwide’s commitment to provide shared value to its business and communities around the world. As the driving strategy for Hilton Worldwide’s corporate responsibility efforts, Travel with Purpose focuses on creating opportunities for individuals to reach their full potential; strengthening local communities where Team Members live, work and travel; celebrating cultures and the power of travel; and living sustainably through the measurement, analysis and improvement of the use of natural resources. Visit www.cr.hiltonworldwide.com for more information.