PepsiCo and Talabat launch recycling drive to encourage sustainability

The programme is in line with the UAE government’s vision towards a greener future

PepsiCo and Talabat in partnership with Jumeirah Village Circle and Sobha Hartlands residential communities have launched a recycling initiativeYalla Return’.

It aims to encourage residents to adopt sustainable practices through a gamified approach on the ‘Yalla Return’ mobile application, creating an engaging experience user’s choosing to recycle through the smart bins. 

The programme reflects PepsiCo and Talabat’s shared vision and commitment to encouraging sustainability, and aligns with their ESG agendas of contributing to the acceleration of action against climate change. 

Participants are eligible for rewards and can view their environmental impact through ‘Yalla Return’ mobile app.

In line with the UAE government’s vision towards a greener future, and the lead-up to COP28 this year, the initiative promotes circular economic practices through resource recovery. 

Balachandran Jayachandran, Gulf General Manager at PepsiCo, said: “At PepsiCo, we talk about the importance of partnerships to drive change and we’re putting it into action through initiatives like this one with Yalla Return and talabat. 

“To drive a circular and inclusive value chain forward, we need to boost recycling rates, and an essential part of that is making collection and recycling more accessible and simultaneously creating incentives for behavioural change. 

“This partnership brings industry players together to leverage collective strengths – innovation, scale, community links, and global best practices – and we are looking forward to seeing the impact this will have in empowering local communities to drive positive environmental action.” 

Simonida Subotic, Vice President at Talabat, said:  As a tech company, we embrace innovative solutions that utilise technology to create shared value for the community and facilitate the adoption of positive everyday practices. 

“Being in a country such as the UAE, which is spearheading sustainability efforts in the region, enables private companies to play an active role in driving behavioural change. 

“These efforts not only help raise awareness, but also equip the community with last mile recycling initiatives that support circularity and UAE’s Net Zero 2050 targets.” 

Rabih El Chaar, Chief Executive Officer at ‘Yalla Return’, said:  “Through Yalla Return, Nadeera is reinventing waste management to present an end-to-end integrated engagement platform, powered by technology and complementing waste  management infrastructure, to facilitate recovery of recyclables, provide customised feedback and rewards, and gamify the recycling journey. 

“At this stage, we are choosing to deploy at a community-by-community scale, which allows us to closely monitor the efficacy of our intervention, as well as assess and optimise the user journey, in order to eventually scale up, maximise resident engagement and consequently, material recovery. “

The initiative has launched in nine specific communities in Dubai, five of which are with Talabat and PepsiCo, with aim for expansion to other areas and maximise the impact of the solution on the environment.