New business

Delta Air’s new business class blanket is made from 100 recycled plastic bottles

Delta Air Lines is looking to bolster its sustainability credentials with a host of visible onboard product updates that will attempt to reduce the amount of single-use plastic the airline uses each year, as well as bolster its sustainability efforts. recycling and promote partnerships with small local businesses. run providers.

The measures are, while welcome, relatively small compared to costly elements like the pressing need to develop readily available and reliable sustainable aviation fuel. But while Delta could be accused of “greenwashing,” Allison Ausband, Delta’s executive vice president and chief customer experience officer, said the airline is looking for every opportunity to accelerate its sustainability goals.

“The decisions we make on every aspect of our product are opportunities to deliver on two fundamental promises: to deliver exceptional customer experiences and to build a better future for people and our planet,” Ausband said Tuesday.

“These latest additions offer something unique to our customers, reduce our environmental impact and enable job creation for the communities we serve around the world.”

In recent months, Delta has already rolled out its recycled plastic bottle covers for Delta One passengers, but the airline is particularly proud of its new comfort kits made by Mexican clothing brand Someone Somewhere.

Delta’s partnership with the clothing brand has created jobs for 250 people, while the sustainably designed convenience kit completely eliminates five single-use plastic items, with the net effect of saving up to 900 pounds of plastic waste per year.

Pens are now made from cardboard while plastic toothbrushes have been replaced with bamboo alternatives. Grown Alchemist will provide products like lip balm and hand lotion in foil packaging.

Bamboo is also the material of choice for Delta’s new service items in the main cabin. Full rollout isn’t expected before the end of the year, but the Atlanta-based airline expects to save up to 4.3 million pounds of plastic waste annually once bamboo cutlery replaces old plastic knives and forks.

These latest initiatives are very visible and low-hanging fruit and Delta will need to do much more if it is to deliver on its promise to become the world’s first carbon-neutral airline. Just before the pandemic, Delta committed $1 billion to projects over the next 10 years to achieve this goal.

Despite the dramatic impact of the pandemic, Delta confirmed late last year that it was still committed to the project.

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Mateusz Maszczynski

Mateusz Maszczynski honed his skills as an international flight attendant at the Middle East’s most important airline and flew throughout the COVID-19 pandemic for a well-known European airline. Matt is passionate about the aviation industry and has become an expert in passenger experience and human-centered stories. Always on the cutting edge, Matt’s knowledge, analysis and news coverage are often used by some of the biggest names in journalism.