NamKyung Side Dish's efforts to be 'Plastic-Free' are now expanding to the entire Mangwon Market. Mangwon Market has been operating the ‘Be Courageous! Mangwon Market’ campaign to all stores since last May, where you can shop without disposable products. A total of 87 stores in Mangwon Market are participating.
‘Be Courageous! Mangwon Market’ contains the double meaning of using courage and using a multi-use container to purchase items. In fact, it is not as easy as you might think to ask the customer to put the product in a container that the customer brings instead of the product packaged as a disposable product. Prior to the full-scale campaign, the Mangwon Market Merchants Association also conducted an ‘environmental school’ education for all merchants on April 29th. An official from the Merchants Association said, "I took the time to explain why we need to reduce the use of plastic and at the same time urge customers who brought multi-use containers not to say or do anything that might make them uncomfortable."
Mangwon Market pays a coupon each to customers who bring a multi-use container with food or a shopping cart. If you collect 10 or more coupons and bring them to the merchant's meeting, each coupon will be exchanged for a 10L volume-based bag.
The results of the 'don't use disposable products' campaign are not yet great. The use of shopping carts has been established to some extent, but it is an analysis within the merchant association that there is not enough incentive for customers to visit the market with a multi-use container, even if it is somewhat cumbersome. In fact, on August 6th, most stores packed their products in disposables in advance or were using black plastic as they are. CEO Lee Bok-soo said, "There are very few customers who bring multi-use containers on weekdays, and young people usually bring multi-use containers and serve side dishes on the weekends." “There are young people who bring empty plastic bottles to buy rice or grains,” said Ko Jong-soon, president of Madangso from which sesame is poured. From last May to this day, the number of pay-as-you-go bags that customers have exchanged is 5738. This is only 23% of the 24,000 envelopes supported by Mapo-gu.
The Mangwon market is expected to take on a new challenge. The company plans to manufacture self-made multi-use containers with the ‘Mangwon Market’ logo and provide them to customers. If the container is returned to a separate return area on weekends, etc., it will be reused after undergoing washing and disinfection processes at the market. An official from the merchant association said on the 8th, "'Be Courageous! Mangwon Market’ is the first step to pass on a clean environment to the next generation,” he said.