Miwa (Minimum Waste) is a Czech company that realised recycling is not the way forward and decided to make waste-free shopping the new norm and to help integrate it into shops and supermarkets in order to tackle this issue. Miwa has partnered with businesses in Prague but has also expanded to France and Switzerland.
The Miwa system is threefold:
- It sells smart reusable capsules with a capacity of 12L which circulate in a closed loop system among the manufacturer, the store and a washing centre. After being filled, they carry detailed information about the product inside and maintain its freshness.
- These capsules are filled by the producer and installed into modular shelves which are fitted into shops. These shelves also provide real-time data about stock.
- The Miwa cup is a smart reusable food container which automatically communicates with the cash-desk system about the product purchased
Using smart technology, the system of reusable shelves, capsules and cups is reused for as long as health and safety standards allow them to. They use safe, durable and easily recyclable material so that once their lifespan is finished, they are recycled. This system is powered by an app which also informs customers about product details such as expiry and allergen content.
In 2018, Life Cycle Analysis of the Miwa system was conducted by a group of experts from the University of Chemistry and Technology in Prague which concluded that, in comparison to conventional distribution in disposable packaging, Miwa reduces the overall negative environmental footprint by 71%. This number includes eco-toxicity, water consumption and fossil fuel consumption.