Join Hubbub in calling for more funding for coffee cup recycling

At Hubbub, we are looking for three local authorities to join us to secure more corporate funding to expand coffee cup recycling schemes in the UK.

In 2017 Hubbub ran two of the UK’s largest coffee cup recycling campaigns, in Manchester and London. The London ‘Square Mile Challenge’ has successful recycled over 4 million cups since being launched in April.

Based on this experience, a model has been created that can be extended to other major towns and cities. Local authorities have a crucial role to play, but the schemes cannot progress without corporate investment.

Unfortunately, despite the fact that disposable coffee cups are high on the political and media agenda, Hubbub has been unable as yet to persuade the industry to make significant further investment (Starbucks’ voluntary latte levy is a notable exception). This might change if we can demonstrate that there are three more local authorities willing to take a lead on developing campaigns in their areas.

Hubbub has created a ‘How to Guide’ making it as easy as possible for large businesses and venues to recycle coffee cups, and we are working on a similar document for local authorities so that they can replicate the successful elements from our campaigns in Manchester and London. This experience has shown that local authorities have a crucial role as a catalyst to get things started but do not need to make an on-going long-term investment once the scheme is established.

In a nut-shell we believe that the role of the local authority is:

  1. To act as the leader to instigate a ‘Coffee Cup Recycling Challenge’ in their locality.
  2. To act as a project manager scoping out the budget, milestones, recycling process, etc.
  3. To recruit key local organisations to deliver the campaign.
  4. To oversee the marketing and promotional elements. Including the short-term installation of high profile coffee cup recycling bins in prominent public spaces.
  5. To promote the campaign internally including setting up in-house recycling facilities and putting collection tubes on street cleaning carts.
  6. To measure impact and celebrate successes.

If required, Hubbub can provide consultancy support if there are insufficient in-house resources.

If we receive sufficient local authority interest we will be asking the industry body to provide investment in each of the three areas to extend the campaign. Our hope is that we can prove that coffee cup recycling is viable across the UK, and not just in the densely-packed Square Mile of London.

If your local authority is interested in backing our ambition, we would ask you to:

  • Commit to doing all you can to instigate a new coffee cup recycling campaign if the funding is secured.
  • Allow Hubbub to put your name forward to the Paper Cup Recovery Recycling Group as a local authority willing to lead on a coffee cup recycling campaign in your area.

We hope this is of interest and that together we can persuade the industry to make further investment in three areas. If you wish to support the idea or want further information please contact Alex Robinson: