Food and hospitality sector finalists announced in Victorian Premier’s Sustainability Awards

A program that re-purposes discarded hotel soap for disadvantaged communities, a company making innovative reusable takeaway containers and a health service donating patient surplus meals to people in need have been announced as finalists in the 2019 Victorian Premier’s Sustainability Awards.
Soap Aid’s program, Hotel to Hands, is a finalist in the Innovative Products or Services category. It collects discarded soap from hotel and travel industry partners, then sorts, cleans, and reprocesses it into fresh, hygienic soap bars. In 2018, Soap Aid distributed over 301,440 bars of soap to communities without adequate sanitation in Cambodia, Zambia, Ghana, Uganda and the Philippines as well as remote Australian Aboriginal communities.
retub™ is a finalist in the Small and Medium Enterprises category. It is a modern reusable takeaway food container that reduces waste in up to three different ways and uses a unique, built-in container exchange program, Reswap. It endeavours to eliminate single-use takeaway food-containers throughout Australia and potentially, overseas, through product and process design with a focus on supply chain and marketing.
Acknowledging the impacts of food waste, Melbourne Health’s surplus patient meals are collected daily by OzHarvest who deliver them to community food hub Northpoint Centre for processing and distribution, helping community members in need. Since February 2018, over 4,000 meals per month have been redistributed, removing nine tonnes of food from landfill and reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 17 tonnes CO2e per year. For this program, Melbourne Health has been selected as a finalist in the Health category.
The Premier’s Sustainability Awards is one of Victoria’s major sustainability programs, celebrating people working to reduce the impact of climate change and to create a better future for us all.
The interim CEO of Sustainability Victoria, Carl Muller, congratulated finalists for their innovative work, building a more sustainable environment for current and future generations.
“Delivering these Awards means we continue to discover and celebrate the talent and enthusiasm Victorians have for thinking creatively about new models of sustainability,” he said.  “The Awards, now in their 17th year, acknowledge leadership, innovation and achievement. Each finalist is commended for improving sustainable outcomes across business, government, education, health and within the community.”
Winners will be announced across 11 categories at the Awards ceremony on Thursday 10 October at Forum Melbourne.  The Premier of Victoria, Daniel Andrews, will personally select the winners of the Premier's Regional Recognition Award and the Premier's Recognition Award, which will be presented at the Awards ceremony.
For more information on the Awards, finalists and to purchase tickets for the event, visit
For media, contact Cath Newell on 0423 587 478.