PokerStars Joins Campaign to Reduce Plastic Waste from Poker Tournaments

PokerStars is participating in ECOSEC’s “Poker Against Plastic Pollution” campaign, joining 888poker, Fivebet, Grosvenor Poker, and the Irish Poker Tour.
February 13, 2023

It’s great to know that poker operators and casinos are doing what they can to help protect the environment. PokerStars has joined four other global poker operators in a campaign to replace traditional plastic tamper-evident bags used in poker tournaments with biodegradable bags.

ECOSEC, a UK-based company that supplies environmentally-friendly products to the banking, health care, and gaming industries, launched its Poker Against Plastic Pollution campaign with 888poker in April 2022. Grosvenor Poker, the Irish Poker Tour, and the French poker room Fivebet joined the campaign last fall.

The company posted the news to Facebook on February 5 that PokerStars had joined the campaign. Karim Louis, CEO of ECOSEC, posted an identical statement on LinkedIn the next day. The campaign was also featured in a Facebook Reel on February 2.

The Poker Against Plastic Pollution campaign also includes a pledge by ECOSEC to pay for planting five trees for every 1,000 biodegradable bags purchased by operators. Louis said the company had planted more than 700 trees, which translates to 140,000 bags purchased by the industry so far.

ECOSEC said the trees are planted through the company’s environmental partners “in areas of deforestation, helping repair the environment and supporting the wildlife that lives within it.”

Louis added that the campaign had also removed more than 500 kilograms (1,102 pounds) of traditional plastics from circulation.

The campaign also includes a social media component.

On its website, ECOSEC says its overall directive is “championing environmental awareness to the players and their followers using social media platforms, marketing [partner operators’] events on our social channels, and creating products which have a low manufacturing impact on the environment.”

True to its word, the company’s Facebook page includes several posts about poker tournaments held by all five operators. Interspersed with those messages are updates on how the effort to replace traditional plastic bags with biodegradable ones is faring.

A previous post by the campaign on Facebook credited PokerStars for its involvement with the campaign through a link to a separate post on Instagram on January 26 that shows a biodegradable bag branded with the PokerStars logo in use in the Bahamas.

The bag pictured was likely used as part of the PokerStars Caribbean Adventure (PCA) or the PokerStars Players Championship (PSPC), both of which were being held at the Baha Mar in the Bahamas in late January into early February.

“Our biodegradable bags have reached the beautiful Bahamas,” the campaign said on Instagram. “A massive thanks to PokerStars for the support.”

ECOSEC offers two options to poker operators interested in participating in the campaign.

Under the first option, operators can purchase generic bags or buy bags that can be customized with a sticker displaying the operator’s logo. The company said that operators interested in the former must order a minimum of 100 bags.

The second option requires a minimum order of 10,000 bags, with delivery in about six to seven weeks.

In an exclusive interview with pokerfuse last fall, Louis said the campaign was off to a great start. “It’s great to know that poker operators and casinos are doing what they can to help protect the environment,” he said.

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