PepsiCo Poland has introduced a mobile game controlled by an empty plastic bottle (a real one). The game is a part of an educational programme designed to teach children how to recycle.
Crushing plastic bottles before recycling seems to be an obvious thing to do. But what is obvious at home seems less obvious in public places, gyms, offices, parks or streets where people just throw away plastic bottles without caring too much. Uncrushed bottles take up to 80% more space in the trash. This makes waste transport frequent and expensive as trucks carry air instead garbage. Since adults are usually reluctant to learn, PepsiCo in Poland directed its environmental program to children. The program revolves around a mobile game called Up Up Hippo. The game requires a real plastic bottle to play. By squeezing a plastic bottle children make the main character move. Hippo is jumping, sailing and flying but only when they squeeze a plastic bottle in front of a smartphone. So when the game is over, at least one plastic bottle is crushed properly. Although the game uses microphone and sound recognition to work, a balloon-based design, pumping, squeezing and even music performed on genuine balloons make an impression that it is the air from the crushed bottle that makes Hippo move.
Up Up Hippo sessions were held in a number of schools and kindergartens. Before playing the game, children are asked to fill a trash bin with uncrushed plastic bottles. They can see for themselves that in such a case a bin fits no more than four middle sized bottles. Then the devices are given out and children are free to play under the teacher’s supervision. After all bottles are crushed, the bin is filled again. Usually it fits around 16 squeezed bottles. This experiment makes children realize how important it is to crush plastic bottles and then throw them into a right container, which is the last part of the session.
Up Up Hippo has been designed and developed by Deloitte Digital CE. It has already been enjoyed by thousands of children around the world.