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

For more infrequently pleasant updates on eco news & gifts, like and follow Arte Ideas on Facebook & Twitter. Looking for ideas on what to ecogift to buy loved ones? Visit our Pinterest page!

4 Ways Recycled Products help the Environment

We have added a whole new selection of recycled products, each takes unwanted and discarded items and transforms them  into something beautiful and wanted. They also make perfect gifts, as well as help your community and the environment. If you are not already buying into recycled products, discover how you can make a difference by going green.

Recycling is the process of collecting materials that would otherwise go to the landfills, but it makes more sense to reuse these materials and turn them into new products, here is where recycling manufacturers turn trash into new products. They are aware of how beneficial it is to reduce the amount of waste, natural resources and pollution used or caused by not recycling, not to mention reducing the amount of greenhouse gas emissions that contributes to global climate change.

Recycled Woolly Jumpers

Recycled throws and cushions covers are made from discarded wool garments with buttons, zippers and poppers removed.  Transforming the new wool yarn, into stylish products. Products such as the Recycled Wool Herringbone Throw, which is a soft, grey and white, hand-woven throw with the unnecessary pieces removed.

There are so many possibilities with recycled materials, even eccentric characters with great personalities are produced from recycled textiles. Ruby Ruth Dolls use materials that have been sourced from local charity shops, car boot sales and donations, which means one of your characters may have once been part of someone’s favorite jumper.  These dolls also make great doorstops or bookends.

ruby ruth dolls - sid


We have just received some new characters to add to the family, which includes Malcolm who can often be found looking out to sea for answers and a new Lola who loves sleeping under the stars.

Recycled Living

Ashortwalk manufacture recycled products that provide an alternative to landfill by transforming disposable plastic coffee cups into stylish new products such as their Recycled Rectangular Placemats.  This innovative product has a lovely solid, heavy quality feel much like a slate, it also has an easy wipe surface and is suitable for ovenware.

Ashortwalk Rectangular Placemats

Ashortwalk Rectangular Placemats

Recycled Plastics

There are a range of outdoor recycled products in the Arte store, such as this Eco Plant Holder that is made from 100% recycled plastic plant pots, gathered and transformed into an innovative product that can be screwed to shed, fences or any solid wall that can be screwed. If you think vertical, you do so much more with your garden, while doing your part in saving the environment.

Eco Plant Holder

Eco Plant Holder

These are some of the many recycled products Arte Ideas has to offer you, please visit arteideas.co.uk, we currently still have 20% discount offer on Spineless Classic Prints, also we’d appreciate if you could like and follow us on Facebook & Twitter. Happy Recycling!