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Major Coffee Chains Sign Paper Cup Recycling Manifesto

Wednesday, July 06, 2016   (0 Comments)
Posted by: Anne Piacentino
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Source:  Chartered Institution of Wastes Management (CIWM)

The Foodservice Packaging Association (FPA) and Paper Cup Recovery and Recycling Group (PCRRG) have launched an industry-wide Manifesto with the objective of significantly increasing paper cup recovery and recycling rates by 2020.

The Manifesto has more than 30 signatories – including Caffe Nero, Costa and Starbucks – representing each stage of the paper cup supply chain from raw material suppliers, cup manufacturers and retail high street brands to waste and recovery operators and paper reprocessors.

Defra has recognised the Manifesto and views it as a welcome example of industry working together.

The Manifesto pledges that: “The paper cup supply chain agrees to work together to ensure paper cups are designed, used, disposed of and collected to maximise the opportunities for recycling by further investment and funding of recycling, disposal and collection projects.”

Mark Pawsey MP, Chairman of the All Party Parliamentary Group for Packaging, who has been closely involved in the development of the Manifesto and formally launched the initiative at the QEII conference centre in Westminster, said: “I’m encouraged to see industry working so closely together to find and implement solutions for recovering and recycling paper cups.”

The Manifesto is a voluntary commitment, funded by its members, to deliver systemic change that will increase the sustainable recovery and recycling rates of used paper cups. The Manifesto work programme will be run by an industry-wide executive board made up of elected members, with delegated reporting working groups. Signatory organisations are publicly recognising that working together is essential if long-lasting change is to be achieved.

The Manifesto provides a public commitment from signatories to work collaboratively to increase access to information, schemes and facilities that enable used paper cups to be sustainably recovered and recycled.

The Manifesto pledges that: “The paper cup supply chain agrees to work together to ensure paper cups are designed, used, disposed of and collected to maximise the opportunities for recycling by further investment and funding of recycling, disposal and collection projects.”

Coffee Cup Controversy
National media reports have recently criticised high street coffee chains for misleading the public about how many paper cups they recycle, after it emerged that fewer than one in 400 high street coffee chain paper cups are actually recycled.

Fewer than 3m were recycled last year in the UK, according to Simply Cups, which operates Britain’s only paper cup recycling service.

Peter Goodwin, co-founder of Simply Cups, said that it was apparent the application of the recycling symbol on a product (from whatever industry) bears no guarantee that a product – whilst recyclable – is actually going to be recycled.

During a House of Commons session, Resources Minister, Rory Stewart, admitted there is a “huge problem” and suggested that the answer could be in a similar tax on paper cups to that of plastic bags.

Almost immediately, however, Defra issued a statement saying it had no plans to create “disposable Cup Tax”.

CIWM Journal Online asked visitors to the site in an online poll whether a cup levy should created.

The majority of respondents (70%) were of the opinion a levy should be created, while 30% were against the idea.

 Washington State Recycling Association | 545 Andover Park W, Ste 209, Tukwila, WA 98188 | 206.244.0311 | recycle@wsra.net

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