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Starbucks launches reusable 'Circular Cup' in the UK

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Starbucks launches a reusable ‘Circular Cup’ in the UK which is made from six single-use paper mugs
The fancy new coffee cup makes good on the firm’s commitment to cut waste
Starbucks uses around 6 billion cups a year at…

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Starbucks launches a reusable 'Circular Cup' in the UK which is made from six single-use paper mugs

  • The fancy new coffee cup makes good on the firm's commitment to cut waste
  • Starbucks uses around 6 billion cups a year at its more than 30,000 locations
  • The Seattle-based firm's single use coffee cups fill landfills around the world 

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Starbucks has unveiled a reusable 'Circular Cup' in the UK made from six single-use paper mugs.

The smart new cup has been created for the coffee giant by Cornish company Circular&Co, which specialises in recycled cups and travel mugs. 

Circular Cup, which comes in a pastel white featuring the Starbucks logo and a dark green lid, will be available to buy in UK branches for ?11.95 from August 20.

The coffee behemoth, which uses about 6 billion cups a year at its more than 30,000 locations, said the new cup contributes to a circular economy, where resources are kept in use for as long as possible rather than discarded to landfill.  

The smart new cup will be a must-buy for eco-conscious lovers of Starbucks' brown stuff

The smart new cup will be a must-buy for eco-conscious lovers of Starbucks' brown stuff

'Starbucks has a longstanding commitment to environmental responsibility and has for decades embedded sustainability as a priority across all aspects of our business,' the firm said. 

'The use of reusables is part of Starbucks ongoing commitment to reducing waste and becoming a resource positive company.' 

The Seattle-based firm already introduced compostable and recyclable coffee cups in London earlier in the year in a bid to reduce waste by 50 per cent over the next decade. 

Pricing for the fancy new cup is yet to be announced, but coffee lovers can get their hands on one later this week

Pricing for the fancy new cup is yet to be announced, but coffee lovers can get their hands on one later this week

They look almost identical to the traditional paper cups used by Starbucks but replace the plastic inner lining with a biodegradable material.

The Circular Cup goes a step further by providing Starbucks fans with an official reusable product that should last for years.  

Recent support from Starbucks has enabled Circular&Co's founder to scale up and move production of the cups to a factory in St Austell, Cornwall. 

Some consumers are still under the impression that the takeaway cups handed out by coffee shop chains can be recycled along with other paper waste.

However, they're made with a plastic coating on the interior that means they cannot be processed by recycling plants.   

Starbucks is set to add more plant -based food and drinks to its menu, make its packaging reusable and invest in better waste-management

Starbucks is set to add more plant -based food and drinks to its menu, make its packaging reusable and invest in better waste-management

In January, the firm laid out environmental targets for 2030 including halving landfill waste from stores and carbon emissions from its direct operations and supply chain.

Starbucks is set to add more plant -based food and drinks to its menu, make its packaging reusable and invest in better waste-management, CEO Kevin Johnson said.

The firm has failed in the past to meet some of its own environmental goals, including making 25 percent of its cups reusable by 2015.

Johnson noted that his company is approaching its 50th anniversary next year and it hopes to 'become resource positive and give more than they take from the planet'. 

Since August 7, Starbucks has once again been accepting reusable cups in stores across Europe, the Middle East and Africa, after a temporary pause was put in place, 'out of an abundance of caution' due to the Covid-19 outbreak.   

Starbucks also rolled out strawless lids in July to save 40 million plastic straws across Europe, the Middle East and Africa. 

WHAT COMMITMENTS ARE BIG NAME BRANCHES MAKING TO CUT DOWN ON SINGLE-USE PLASTIC?

Costa Coffee has promised to recycle as many cups as it puts into the market by 2020 and also offers customers a 25p discount on hot beverages if they bring their own reusable cup.

Pret A Manger offers a 50p discount on hot beverages if people bring their own reusable cup. 

A spokesperson said: 'We doubled our discount for customers who bring in their own reusable cup to 50p in January 2018 and, since then, usage has increased almost 20-fold. 

'We now serve over 150,000 drinks in reusable cups every week, and since the discount was doubled, Pret customers have saved over six million paper cups.'

Starbucks offers customers a 25p discount on hot beverages if they bring their own reusable cup

Starbucks offers customers a 25p discount on hot beverages if they bring their own reusable cup

Starbucks offers customers a 25p discount on hot beverages if they bring their own reusable cup. 

The chain has announced its London cafes will trial a redesigned cup that will be both recyclable and compostable.

A spokesman said: 'Our British stores are the first globally to have trialled a 5p charge on takeaway cups.' He said reusable cup uptake had risen from 1..8% to more than 5% in the past 18 months. 

Along with McDonald's it has invested ?10m in firms hoping to design a sustainable alternative to the disposable cup.

Caff? Nero  says that, along with its competitors, it is 'working to increase the number of [coffee cup] recycling points' in the UK. It also encourages the use of reusable cups by offering 2 stamps per coffee on its loyalty card.

Caff?

Nero, Starbucks, Greggs, McDonald's UK and Pret A Manger are also involved in a cup recycling scheme that funds the collection of takeaway cups for recycling.

Cafe Nero encourage the use of reusable cups by offering 2 stamps per coffee on its loyalty card

Cafe Nero encourage the use of reusable cups by offering 2 stamps per coffee on its loyalty card

But are they doing enough?

Research shows that very few disposable coffee cups get recycled.

The mixture of plastic and paper in the lining, which is designed to make them leakproof and retain the heat, causes difficulties.

In 2011 a survey by Which?

Suggested eight out of 10 people mistakenly believed coffee cups could be recycled.

They create tens of thousands of tonnes of landfill every year and hundreds of thousands a day are discarded as litter.

Many people mistakenly think they can be recycled

2.5 billion coffee cups are thrown away every year.

A minuscule 0.25% are recycled. 

A shocking 25,000 tonnes of waste a year in landfill 

1 in 5 people visit a coffee shop daily. 

 

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