Why Are Disposable Coffee Cups Still Failing To Recycle?

diagram of how many disposable cups are sold by the big coffee chains

The big chain coffee shops such as Starbucks and Costa Coffee are still failing to make it easy for customers to recycle or produce the means of reducing the use of disposable cups. The yearly amount of cups takeaway cups still stand at 2.5bn in the UK, and it is distinguishable from just glancing at a public rubbish bin that they are full of potential recyclable items, So why are we still not recycling them?

While disposing of these cups might seem to be the right way of going with big chain coffee shops constantly reducing the amount of material used with each cup, but are they really making it easier to recycle? Disposable cups are predominantly made of cardboard (around 95% of its weight, and we hope recycled) and 5% polyethylene in the form of a thin coating inside the cup. The reason they do this is that the coating provides insulation for the cup and stops the cardboard from going soggy. Most people don’t realise that this coating cannot be recycled, paper mills are unable to process this with mixed material.

So one of things we can do is make the general population of this and make them more aware of alternatives. We would prefer if the government and coffee businesses stepped in to do more to encourage people to bring their own reusable cups. We are seeing some organisations such as Starbucks offer discounts of up to 25p by bringing your own reusable cup, so why not start a campaign asking people to bring their own cup! (B.Y.O.C anyone!, you can have that one for free). We will do our best to keep nudging the big coffee chains to make more people aware of bringing their own reusable cups and upping their efforts in reducing waste.

All we can say is that we are trying to do out bit by offering affordable alternatives such as Keep Cups, which are the first ever Barista standard reusable coffee/tea cup, now that’s something to shout about. Joco also design a reusable cups, a glass variation. These cups both help out mother nature, and also help you ditch the disposable cup.

keep cups' alchemy collection

glass reusable cups by joco

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