Veolia, the international waste management company, recently launched a coffee cup recycling scheme in the UK in collaboration with some of the UK’s main high street coffee chains. 7 million cups of takeaway coffee are consumed in the UK every day. Until recently, this huge amount of resources was not being collected for recycling but instead would have been disposed of as general waste, most likely to be incinerated for energy recovery.
Veolia is deploying its coffee cup take-back service in stores and commercial premises across the UK. Its special system guarantees that the cups are collected free from food contamination – consumers are encouraged to empty the cups and stack them upside down – so that they can then be sent for recycling before the pulp is reused to make all kinds of new products. Circular economy in action.
Veolia’s takeback solution for the recycling of cups is a great example of how we can move to close the circular economy loop, all the while preserving the hygiene, safety and convenience provided by single-use coffee cups. Pack2Go Europe is also working on a parallel initiative which it plans to announce soon. Initiatives like these will provide the missing link for consumers and businesses to drink coffee on-the-go in a sustainable way.