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Vodafone Launches Initiatives To Reduce Plastic Waste

Vodafone Group Plc (VOD.L,VOD) announced Friday many initiatives, including half-sized SIM cards and eco-friendly accessories, aiming to reduce the use of plastic and the related environmental impact.

The company said it is replacing the standard credit card-sized SIM holder with a new half-sized format. This would reduce 50% of plastic used to produce SIMs. The move is part of a wider strategy to minimise the company's use of all non-essential plastics. The new cards will be provided to several European markets from the beginning of 2020.

The company will progressively replace the use of full-sized card holders across all Vodafone's 24 markets. The initiative alone will reduce Vodafone's plastic waste by more than 340 tonnes per annum.

Further, Vodafone stores will offer customers a range of eco-friendly accessories under the label 'Red Loves Green' starting from Christmas 2019. These will include 100% biodegradable or recyclable phone cases, charging banks and docks made from sustainable materials, and plastic-free packaging.

The company said it plans to expand its range of 'Red Loves Green' products at retail during 2020.

Vodafone will also provide the more ethical, reliable and sustainable Fairphone 3 smartphone in five markets, such as Germany, Italy, UK, Spain, and Ireland. The product is sold with sustainable and reusable packaging and manufactured from responsibly sourced, conflict-free tin and tungsten, recycled copper and plastics, and gold sourced by Fairtrade.

The company will also eliminate all unnecessary plastics and other disposable single-use items where there are lower impact alternatives across all Vodafone retail stores and offices in 24 countries by the end of March 2020.

Vodafone said its 7,700 retail stores worldwide will no longer use disposable plastic bags and will also remove or restrict plastic marketing or promotional materials.

The initiates are part of the company's efforts to half its carbon footprint and purchase all electricity from renewable sources by 2025.

Vodafone has also committed to reuse, resell or recycle 100% of its network waste and help customers extend the lives of the devices they already own.

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