Various industries in Vietnam have been taking sustainability initiatives toward COP26 goals and in line with the global trends and requirements.


At the COP26 climate conference taking place in Scotland in Nov 2021, Vietnam made a commitment to bring net emissions to zero by 2050, joined the pledge to reduce global methane emissions by 2030. In reality, Vietnam is gradually shifting from a linear economy toward a circular economy, targeting sustainable economic development for a more competitive economy. To realize that goal, the government recently issued Decision 687 on circular economy development which was followed earlier by the revised Law on Environmental Protection (LEP). In response to recent government measures,  various industries and their respective players have taken numerous sustainability initiatives and endeavors.


Since AEON Vietnam launched its first shopping mall in Vietnam back in 2014, all of the retailer’s department stores and supermarkets have been using biodegradable plastic (PHSH) carrier-bags. By the end of 2022, the rate of PHSH bags in AEON Vietnam was expected to reach 100%.  Central Group (Go) and Bach Hoa Xanh (part of The Gioi Di Dong Group) have also taken similar steps.

Annam Gourmet offers a range of eco-friendly recycled bags, including traditional paper wine and grocery bags, bags made of cavas and jute for hauling the weekly shop, mesh bags for fruit and vegetables and aluminium foil ziplock bags to keep extra-perishable food such as seafood or icecream from spoiling.

They also have a bottle recycling program where you can bring back any empty glass bottles from selected brands as well as e-gift cards in conjunction with giftee Mekong Vietnam.

Classic Fine Foods officially announced it’s now distributing eco-friendly packaging made in Vietnam. Most recently (August 2022), Classic Fine Foods also launched its own in-house cutting, packaging and vacuuming room with the ultimate goal of bringing valued B2B customers the precise size (100g to 1kg) for their needs to eliminate food waste and stock par level concerns. Best part? The packaging is 0% plastic, 100% compostable and eco-friendly.

ByNature has exacting environmental standards that it requires from its suppliers. All produce is seasonal, organic and delivered directly to the customer in recyclable boxes. They also vet and frequently visit their partner farms, and test all new fruits and vegetables to ensure that organic methods are used. For Vietnamese local pantry products, they visit the production sites to verify that they meet ByNature standards as well. ByNature also sells ethically sourced meat.


Say hello to Vietnam’s first-ever coffee compostable packaging brought to you by the good guys at HRK Group, who is behind some of the most eco-friendly packaging in Vietnam including water-soluble eco-”plastic” and 0% plastic biodegradable and compostable Mulch Films and fruit and vegetable bags.

Last year, Pepsi Vietnam announced it has launched 100% recycled PET bottles in Vietnam, with the caps and labels to follow soon. This is on the back of its commitment to go fully recycled in 9 countries across the EU, and reduce the average carbon emissions of each bottle by 40%. Its other soft drinks such as 7Up, Mountain Dew and Lipton Ice Tea are also being considered.

Also last year, Heineken Vietnam was recognized as one of the “Top 50 most sustainable companies in Vietnam”, in the 2022 Corporate Sustainability Awards, which celebrates commitment and practices in sustainable development. In line with Heineken’s mission – ‘Brewing a Better Vietnam’, all Heineken beers are currently brewed from 52% renewable energy, and 100% of our waste and by-products across 6 breweries are reused and recycled.

Plus, 100% of Heineken Vietnam’s bottles are returned for reuse before eventually being recycled, while materials like cardboard, aluminum, plastic and paper are likewise reused or recycled; 100% of its wastewater is treated to Grade A so it can be reused or returned safely to the environment.

On August 19th, Heineken Vietnam, WWF-Viet Nam, the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development and local partners launched a water conservation program in critical river basins to strengthen water governance in Vietnam.

Upcycled, recycled, and made in Vietnam. Mashed Up Gin is a craft gin and one of a handful of gins upcycled from beer and bottled in recycled beer bottles. These bottles are hand-cast to resemble ancient beer bottles with a circular top, square bottom, and a flip-top lid on top of that. Distilled herbs are also given to local farms for pig food and the heads and tails go toward alcohol production in pharmacies.

Pizza4Ps has long been one of the standard bearers for sustainability in Vietnam, leading the way long before sustainability was a talked-about issue. 66% of its buying is from renewable sources – including its ingredients, napkins, cutlery and even the string on Pizza4Ps  burrata cheese. However, it has struggled to go entirely plastic-free, due to the lack of food-safe alternatives.

Pizza4Ps’ new partnership with TONTOTON tracks the plastic packaging used in 4Ps retail products, then empowers local communities in Phu Quoc Island and Hon Son Island to rescue the same amount of non-recyclable plastic from the coastline. The collected plastic is then used as an alternative fuel at a cement manufacturing factory, replacing fossil fuel.

Here’s another reason to pick up a bar of Marou chocolate. Maison Marou buys from local Vietnamese farmers, then makes the chocolate locally at their factories. Their commitment ensures that their “cacao-to-chocolate value chain is strong, socially responsible and environmentally sustainable”. Their annual reports also showcase the work they do to make chocolate an ethical and sustainable choice for consumers. As local Vietnamese chocolate, these bars have the added benefit of low food miles, in addition to their eco-friendly ethos.

Another chocolate player in Vietnam making the chocolate industry a more ethical and sustainable one is The Cocoa Project, which sources all its chocolate beans locally and uses recycled paper for all its bean-to-bar chocolate packaging.

Pendolasco regards the eco-impact of their takeaways seriously. All takeaway pastas are served in a claypot, and there are no plastic bags, instead, Pendolasco ferries their takeaways in reusable bags. They also encourage users to exchange two claypots, or 10 of their reusable bags, for a chocolate mousse.

Pendolasco regards the eco-impact of their takeaways seriously. All takeaway pastas are served in a claypot, and there are no plastic bags, instead, Pendolasco ferries their takeaways in reusable bags. They also encourage users to exchange two claypots, or 10 of their reusable bags, for a chocolate mousse.


Various stakeholders have initiated and implemented green agriculture, an agricultural approach that both serves people’s food demands while being environmentally and health-friendly. Ministries, provinces or municipalities, enterprises, and farmers have pushed the implementation of scientific and technological advances, erecting several models in the direction of green – clean – sustainable development. Typically, rice production has used models such as “flower-side rice fields”, “1 must 5 reductions” and “big sample fields” using VietGAP. In addition, GAP farming practices and biogas in livestock models are used for fruit farming. According to COP26 pledges, Vietnam has finally finished the plan for a biogas program for the cattle sector.

Green agriculture now recognizes a great deal of efforts from both businesses and farmers, with several exceptional projects:

  • The Sustainable Agriculture Transformation Project in Vietnam (VnSAT Project) began in Tay Nguyen and the Mekong Delta in 2017, with 13 provinces and cities participating in the implementation of two key commodities: coffee and rice. The project’s entire capital is 288,237 million USD, which is equivalent to 6,629 billion VND. The VnSAT project has four components: strengthening institutional capacity for agricultural restructuring, sustainable rice development, sustainable coffee development, and project management.
  • The GIC Vietnam project is the German Government’s next technical assistance commitment package, implemented in collaboration with the Department of Economic Cooperation and Rural Development, GIZ, and the six provinces with a total investment capital of 7 million euros. The project will help to improve farming systems toward sustainability, thereby improving the efficiency of natural resource management and use while enhancing the ability of the Mekong Delta’s two main agricultural value chains, rice, and mango, to adapt to and withstand the effects of climate change.
  • Tan Thanh Holdings Investment Joint Stock Company has also offered to invest in the building of the project “Medical value chain related with sustainable forest development in the Central Highlands – Point model in Dak Lak” through the Institute of Green Economy Connection. The project spans more than 1,000 hectares, with a total investment of up to 3,000 billion VND in phase 1. This is believed to be Vietnam’s first closed pharmaceutical production chain that matches international quality and norms.

Cement Manufacturing

Prompted by operational and financial efficiencies as well as legal compliance, cement manufacturers have been proactive in adopting the decarbonization techniques or best practices, the most noticeable and feasible of which are Waste Heat Recovery and Waste Co-processing. Players have been ahead of schedule in terms of WHR installation (the end of 2025 is the deadline set by the Government). As of December 2022, three years head of the timeline, about 44% of the cement producers have their plants installed or are being installed with WHR, some doing it as early as 2002 (Vicem Ha Tien 2) . As for co-processing, things are still at the beginning (with ten co-processing projects so far), even though the first one was licensed and put in operation as far as in 2007 by the industry’s pioneer Holcim (now known as Insee).


In the steel industry, despite less rigid guidelines and less well-defined regulations, so much more has been done in terms of diversification of initiatives, thanks to the already available exhaustive EU BAT (Best Available Techniques) guidelines. A series of decarbonization techniques/ practices have been researched and put in place, namely: Oxy – Gas Furnace, Consteel, Endless Rolling Technology, Furnace Power Recovery Turbine (for EAF technology); Coke Dry Quenching, Closed-recirculating Production Process , Top Pressure Recovery Turbine (for BOF technology), Environmental Management System, Reactive Power Compensation (for both EAF and BOF). It’s worth noting that none of the players can apply all the techniques available for their chosen technology (EAF/ BOF). A player that is a pioneer in this technique (e.g. Consteel) can fall behind in other techniques (such as Closed-recirculating Production Process) or vice versa. Knowledge sharing among players so that they can learn these techniques from one another is limited. The top applicants for decarbonization efforts in BOF technology are Hoa Phat and Formosa. Leading adopters of sustainability practices in EAF technology can be named such as Pomina and Vina Kyoei.

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