Victorian Circular Activator Services Industry Showcase and Meet Up
Bringing ventures promoting circularity in the hospitality and retail industries into the spotlight.
According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, as of 2020, Australia alone produced over 76 million tons of waste with 27% of it being sent to landfill . With an increase of consumption and waste year on year, the drive to promote circularity within industries is on the rise particularly in the hospitality and service industry.
Hosted at RMIT Activator, the Victorian Circular Activator ran its third Showcase on the 26th and 27th of October. The focus of this showcase was to highlight the start-ups and businesses innovating around new circular products, services and offerings in these two key service sectors.
The exhibitors varied in forms of circular economy principles and strategies, with diverse offerings from edible packaging, refillable wine bottles, all the way to smarter ways of lighting up venues and signage. Ventures that participated in the exhibition included:
CafeLab is an emerging venture that is driving a zero waste initiative by educating culinary schools food waste prevention through delicious experimentation. (Website coming soon!)
Cirque Du Soil
With the mission to promote circular and regenerative economies, Cirque Du Soil is diverting waste from landfill by connecting CE manufacturers and suppliers to businesses wanting to buy products and services that are better for our environment.
The power of the collaborative is intertwined in Giant Grass' DNA. It is a business that fosters team work and learning by allowing participants to build structures such as its iconic zome which is made out a of bamboo, a renewable and sustainable material.
With over 2.7 million takeaway coffee cups that end up in landfill, Good Edi encourages a more sustainable way to consume your daily dose of caffeine through edible cups.
Green Eco Technologies
Recipient of the Governor of Victoria Export Award for 2022, Green Eco Technologies' explores circularity through its product; the WasteMaster. This software is designed to repurpose organic waste into reusable resources.
If you're hungry for a good deal and good deed, Forkful diverts food waste from landfill by connecting consumers to hospitality businesses' that have a delicious surplus of food at a lower cost.
No Offence Wines
With 30-60% of the wine industry's carbon footprint attributed to the lack of recycling of wine bottles, No Offence Wines encourages consumers to enjoy their favourite notes in a circular way through the reuse of wine bottles and limited tap releases.
Refuse Design Lab - ZeroTag
Refuse Design Lab, is a company rooted in making a sustainable impact through technological design. ZeroTag a by-product from this company, challenges the concept of branding through multimedia designs of packaging that encourages the reuse of containers.
Known for it's powder-to-clean innovation cleaning products, Resparkle is a brand that is reducing plastic waste consumption through it's refillable bottles and plant based sachet packaging that is compostable.
Based in Melbourne (Naarm), ReWine makes deliciously good local wine and practices a zero-waste supply chain. The wine merchant entices wine lovers to practice sustainability by returning, refilling and reusing bottles, ultimately diverting wine packaging in landfill.
Skrunch-it is a solution that empowers individuals to dispose of soft plastic in an easy manner. The device is used to make recycling convenient by stopping soft plastic from expanding and escaping once deposited in the collection bag.
SmarterLite Group is transforming the way the service and hospitality industry lights up safety and emergency signage. It's product, Safety Path is a battery free light that uses sustainable photoluminescent and LED lighting to light up signage.
Video: Hear from some of the exhibitors from industry showcase.
The community meet up hosted on the evening of the second day was guested by International Circular economy advisor Joan Prummel, who engaged community members in a discussion about integrating circularity in the service industry.
Prummel explored how at every touch point within a business circularity should be considered, particularly within its supply chain. He challenged attendees to think about how circular their business was and the services they support, later taking questions from participants.
Photo: Joan Prummel, International Circular Economy Advisor at Rijkswaterstaat
The keynote ended with a future forum led by Caitlin Phillips-Peddlesden, Circular Program Delivery Lead at RMIT Activator. This gave community members the opportunity to provide feedback about their current experience within the VCA community, as well as give input into the future direction of the VCA. This was followed by an evening of networking for attendees. Circular canapés and wines were in order and catered by Ice Cream Social and ReWine.
The circular economy is a topic that is increasingly becoming the matter of the hour and undoubtedly should be. It explores the opportunity to redesign the way products are manufactured for longevity and the ability to reuse and repair these items for new use. Through these ventures, the hospitality and service industry can redefine what we know as the traditional product life cycle, and contribute to social and economy as well as environmental outcomes.
To stay up to date with upcoming events or to hear more from the Victorian Circular Activator, sign up to our newsletter.
 Waste Account, Australia, Experimental Estimates, Australian Bureau of Statistics, 2020