Reusables, just know the chorus !

Reusables, just know the chorus !

Single-use take-away containers are everywhere and have a considerable impact.
Solutions are available to everyone so we can reduce our waste together and put an end to disposable containers.

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Picture Stand by me

An easy habit to develop

I bring my own reusable container
I take a reusable container from a partner store or restaurant 

The partner restaurants >

I choose my meal, fill my container
Enjoy my meal

Without changing my habits or my menu .

I wash my container and reuse it 
I return my reusable container to a partner restaurant within the day without washing it


     And that's all !




Switch to reusable tableware… ...





     It's that easy ! 


The restaurant network

Restaurants have to accept your own clean containers. Many provide simple reusable container solutions. Discover all the partner restaurants through our map.

See the map >

You offer reusable containers and are not on the map ? 
Would you like to offer reusable containers in your store ? 
Send us an email : ge-environnement@etat.ge.ch


Reusable tableware for everyday use

I use restaurant-provided reusable containers when :

Picto illustration

I don't have a container with me 

You go to a partner restaurant and forgot your box or cup? No worries, you can borrow a returnable container free of charge in exchange of a deposit at any of our partner restaurant. .

See the map >

Illustration picto

I don't want to bother myself

You took a reusable container for your meal and don't want to have to take it home ? No problem, you can take it back to any of our partner stores or restaurants.

The deposit system, how does it work

In Geneva, reusable tableware solutions are available for the take-away sector to replace disposable packaging.

picto1You pay a deposit at your favorite partner restaurant

At a cost of CHF 10.00 for the meal boxes and CHF 5.00 for the cups, you will receive a clean, ready-to-use container for your meal breaks. All you have to do is choose the menu ! 
And thanks to the reCIRCLE app (Google Play, Apple Store), you can borrow a container without even having to pay the deposit !

The partner restaurants >

2Enjoy your meal wherever you want

At the park, at work or even at home, the reusable containers are airtight and easily transportable.


3You take your container back to a partner restaurant 

You get your deposit back.


4 … or you wash it 

And you can use it for your next take-away meal.

The returnable container is free !

The City of Geneva is offering several hundred reusable boxes for free available to the public (while stocks last).

Go to the information points of Servette and Plainpalais, as well as to the Espace Ville de Genève on Boulevard Carl-Vogt to get a reusable lunchbox !

My daily personal container

I use personal containers when :


I want to adapt my container to my needs

I can use the most convenient containers for me, dedicated to the meals I usually eat. Shape and materials, it's my choice !


My box and I, everywhere

Even outside of the partners network, stores have to serve me in my own clean container. Some may even offer a discount !



I want to extend the approach to all my purchases

Bread bags, snack boxes, vegetable nets, bulk purchases, retailers welcome reusable solutions. More info on achetezenvrac.ge.ch

The process in video

Reusable tableware is suitable for all occasions ! At the office or at home, they are practical and airtight and produce no waste. Whether you prefer to bring your own container or adopt returnable dishes, reusable tableware are a simple reflex to adopt on a daily basis... it doesn't change anything, but it changes everything !

Episode 1 : Habits die hard. But at home or at the office, reusable tableware for take-away are the easy way to go.

Episode 2 : Less packaging without changing your menu ? Reusable tableware is THE solution to clean up your kitchen.

Episode 3 : At your favorite restaurants, take your meals in reusable, personal or returnable tableware !


Business communication kit


Are you encouraging your employees to use reusable crockery for their takeaway meals ?

We have a range of materials to help you communicate with your employees and the outside world.

  • a poster
  • reminders
  • stickers
  • a set of visuals for posting on your social networks


Restaurant communication kit


Sticker sol

Stickers in three sizes:

  • 30 cm diameter, to place on the floor,
  • 10 cm in diameter, for display windows
  • 5 cm diameter, for a menu

Would you like to encourage your customers to use reusable containers for their takeaway meals? We can provide you with a range of materials to help you do just that:

  • a poster
  • stickers in three formats: 30 cm diameter, to place on the floor, 10 cm in diameter, in a shop window or 5 cm diameter, on a menu
  • a set of giphy stickers to use on your digital content
  • a loyalty card and a poster promoting the loyalty card

The numbers of the take-away consumption

of consumers

would like to use less disposable packaging. 
(source = Enquête sur la restauration à emporter, EdG, 2021) 

partner restaurants and caffes 

already offer reusable returnable tableware.
> see the partner restaurants

of the take-away consumption 

takes place in the professional context, at lunchtime.
(source = Enquête sur la restauration à emporter, EdG, 2021) 

tons of plastic  

take-away tableware are littered every year. 
(source : Rapport "Les matières plastiques dans l'environnement" en réponse aux postulats Thorens Goumaz, Munz, Flach et groupe PDC, Office fédéral de l'environnement, 2022)

is the annual cost of littering 

of food and drink take-away packaging for municipalities and public transportation societies in Switzerland.
(source : le littering a un coût, Office fédéral de l'environnement, 2011) 

is the price of the deposit 

for a reusable lunch box,
5.- francs for cups.

Your questions about reusable tableware

Can a shopkeeper refuse my own container ?

No, if you bring a clean container that fits the product, he has to accept it. He may refuse it if your container is not well cleaned.

Which are the reusable tableware solutions currently available ?

The available reusable tableware solutions have been carefully screened. Currently, the most commonly found solution is the reCIRCLE system, which offers a restaurant-provided reusable tableware products operated on a network basis.

How does reusable tableware work ?

You have 2 options: 

  • Cash payment: the deposit can be paid in cash directly at the restaurant where the container is borrowed. The container can then be returned to any partner store at any time to collect the deposit. 
  • Dematerialized deposit with the reCIRCLE app (Google Play, Apple store) : the reCIRCLE app lets you borrow a returnable container without having to pay the deposit in cash. And if the container is returned within 7 days, there's no charge to your card ! All you have to do is download the app and identify the user restaurants. At the restaurant, enter the number of containers you have borrowed and take your boxes home. You then have 7 days to return your container. If you return it within these 7 days, your card will not be debited. After 7 days, the deposit is debited from your card electronically, with a surcharge of 1 franc to cover bank charges.

Do I have to wash my restaurant-provided reusable container before taking it back to a partner store ?

If the container is returned the same day, it does not need to be washed. However, after one or more days, the container must be washed and returned clean to any partner restaurant. 

How is the hygiene of the containers guaranteed ?

Restaurants have to wash the containers in a professional dishwasher. In addition, a set of hygiene rules and standards is implemented.

Are the materials used in reusable containers safe ?

reCircle offers containers made of polybutylene terephthalate (PBT) with glass fibers (eggplant colored) or Tritan (transparen containers). Lids are made of polypropylene (PP). The violet containers are suitable for hot food and can be heated up to 160°C in the microwave and oven, for a maximum of 5 minutes. The transparent containers are suitable for cold dishes or can be heated up to 100°C.

All of them comply with the swiss federal Ordinance on materials and articles intended to come into contact with food products, which lays down the requirements regarding potentialmigration of substances into food products.

For more information, visit the reCIRCLE website.

Are there reusable solutions for pizza ?

reCIRCLE has just released a box designed specifically for take-away pizzas. Ask your favorite restaurant owner if he is equipped !

Are reusable dishes really more ecological ?

Yes, reusable dishes are really more environmentally friendly, even if they have to be washed.
Putting them in a dishwasher is ecologically more efficient. 

Reusable dishes can be used hundreds of times. After having used them 15 times, they become ecologically more efficient than disposable tableware. Obviously, the more it is used, the better the ecological balance compared to disposable dishes. So, go on and use it ! 

Moreover, reusable tableware reduces plastic pollution and encourages the local and circular economy. Indeed, it is 100% made in Switzerland and the out-of-use tableware will be recycled to reuse the material.

It also avoids littering: according to the Federal Office for the Environment, littering of take-away food and drink packaging costs the Swiss municipalities and public transport 107 million francs per year.

Can I get delivery in a reusable container ?

Yes, the Uber Eats platform makes it possible for partner restaurants that already offer reusable dishes. The return of the dishes can be done at any time in any partner store. There are plans to expand this offer.


For more information

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and share your reusable experience with the #emportonsmalin !

Contact GE-environnement

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