Ad Nut
Dec 8, 2017

Cathay Pacific sells lai see envelopes made from recycled uniforms

Proceeds from sales of the fabric lucky-money envelopes go to a Hong Kong charity. But will they make you love the brand more?

Cathay Pacific sells lai see envelopes made from recycled uniforms

It seems a bit early to think about Chinese New Year, but credit to Cathay Pacific and McCann Worldgroup Hong Kong for thinking ahead. The airline is now selling what it calls Well Travelled Lai See packets: lucky-money envelopes created from "retired", landfill-destined uniforms rather than from paper. 

Cathay Pacific claims (without citing a source) that Hong Kongers exchange 320 million paper lai see packets each year, while just 2 percent are recycled.

The fabric item can also be used as a travel wallet, passport holder or phone pouch, the brand says.

A pair of packets is priced at HK$168 (US$21.52). The design was created by Angus Tsui, an "award-winning Hong Kong eco-designer" to minimise waste of the uniforms, and Redress and St James Upcycling Centre manufactured the packets. The charity that will benefit is called Feeding Hong Kong.

As a big fan of trees, Ad Nut naturally abhors paper waste. And while this effort certainly won't prevent the annual inundation of paper packets, if it feeds some hungry people, that's great.

That said, Ad Nut has to cast doubt on an assertion made by McCann's ECD, Martin Lever, who stated in a release that "there’s no better way to create genuine brand love” than a project like this.

Come on, man. Setting aside that it's questionable whether 'brand love' even exists, a project such as this is a symbolic gesture at best. No one—at least no one who isn't writing a press release—could seriously expect it to create any meaningful impact on the airline's overall fortunes


Cathay Pacific:
Grace Cheung, Head of Public Engagement - Corporate Affairs Department
Prian Chan, Assistant Environmental Manager - Corporate Affairs Department
Priscilla Chok, Social Media Manager - Corporate Affairs Department

McCann WorldGroup Hong Kong - Cathay Pacific Central Team:
Brandon Cheung, Managing Director

Strategic Planning
Prashant Galani, Strategist
Tracy Lui, Strategist

Account Management
Julia Broughton, Group Account Director
Adina Surdu, Account Director
Julian Egli, Account Manager

Channel Planning
Annie Ng, Associate Channel Planning Director
Teresa Mok, Channel Planner

Martin Lever, Executive Creative Director
Rick Kwan, Creative Director
Guilherme Pecego, Creative Director
Dan Jacques, Associate Creative Director
Agnes Lee, Associate Creative Director
Fanny Lau, Associate Creative Director
Daniel Cheong, Senior Art Director
Wai Wong, Art Director
O Mok, Art Director
Aneeza Arshad, Junior Art Director
Juvenia Poon, Head of Chinese Copy
Jules O'Brien, English Copywriter
Yvonne Cheng, Chinese Copywriter
Debby Yung, English Copywriter
Jennifer Chua, Motion Graphics Designer

Wing Tam, Producer

Ad NutAd Nut is a surprisingly literate woodland creature that for unknown reasons has an unhealthy obsession with advertising. Ad Nut gathers ads from all over Asia and the world for your viewing pleasure, because Ad Nut loves you. Check out Ad Nut's Advertising Hall of Fame.


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