How Do We Encourage More Paper Cup Recycling?



Reducing the Impact of our Daily Coffees on the Environment

With so many people using disposable paper cups, it’s vital that they’re recycled rather than ending up in landfill.

We’re all becoming more environmentally conscious, and we’re trying to do our bit for the planet. Whether that’s making the effort to use less energy at home, or taking the time to recycle your rubbish, every little helps. One area that we are lagging behind on, though, is how we’re drinking our coffee. Yes, you heard that right! Around 84% of coffee shop customers use paper cups when they enjoy their lattes or espressos. That makes for a lot of rubbish, which is really going to have a negative impact on the environment. If you’re going to order some white paper cups for your business, how can you encourage recycling?

A growing area of concern

Coffee cups are becoming something of an environmental challenge. Chances are, a person will grab a coffee a couple of times a week. Or it might even be part of their morning routine. It’s easy to think that one extra cup won’t make a difference, but when you think of just how many people there are who regularly visit their local Costa or Starbucks, the scale of the problem becomes apparent. It’s clear that action needs to be taken so that people can continue enjoying their coffee while reducing the impact on the environment. The question is, how can this be achieved?

More bins

Quick collection could be one of the easiest ways of boosting recycling. By collecting a cup as soon as possible after a customer has finished their drink, it won’t end up falling in with the wrong kind of waste. This means that contamination rates can be greatly reduced, and as a result more of the cup can be repurposed. How would those cups be collected though? Well, having more bins available would help. People have said that they would avoid placing their cup in with the general rubbish if they knew that they would be passing a purpose-built bin. Clearly signposting these rubbish receptacles is essential, so that they public can easily identify them; and more should be available in busy spaces like train stations, shopping centres and offices to maximise their use.

Educating the public

It’s vital that people are better educated on how to separate cups too. By remembering the simple phrase ‘tipped-it, flipped-it and stacked-it’, it’s easy to work recycling into a daily coffee routine. This process involves first making sure that all the remaining liquid has been poured away, and then that the lid, sleeve and cup have been separated. This means that a) the materials aren’t contaminated and that b) they can be easily identified when it comes to them being processed.

Coffee with a conscience

Paper cups are an intrinsic part of grabbing a hot drink on the go now, and they work really well for both coffee shops and those buying the drinks. As long as people take care to dispose of them properly, we can really effectively minimise the effect they have on the environment. Recycling them means that they can be repurposed rather than ending up in landfill. It’s time to start educating and enabling people, so that they can make smart decisions when they’re done with their paper cup.