Coffeeangel tackles cup waste with Friends of the Earth in their new ‘Your Cup Our Future’ initiative
6 Nov 2017
As the Irish Government proposes a 15¢ levy on disposable coffee cups today2, Coffeeangel and Friends of the Earth move ahead with an innovative solution to tackle waste from the café sector.
With 2 million disposable coffee cups a day in Ireland going into landfills2, waste from the café sector has reached worrying proportions. Many solutions have been proposed by the industry, including switching to compostable cups. However, disposable "compostable" cups require commercial composting to biodegrade and most end up in general landfill anyway.
Coffeeangel believes the most effective way to tackle the café industry’s waste issue is by raising awareness and encouraging the use of reusable cups. Beginning today, Coffeeangel will donate 20¢ for every KeepCup used by their customers to Friends of the Earth Ireland to help support local environmental initiatives.
Caroline Sleiman, Director at Coffeeangel, commented: “It is impossible to ignore the impact the human race is having on our environment, and whilst the challenges and changes required are immense, we wholeheartedly believe that through the power of small, personal initiatives we can help make a difference. That is why we have decided to donate 20¢ to Friends of the Earth Ireland, on behalf of our customers, from every Coffeeangel coffee served in a reusable KeepCup as part of our new ‘Your Cup Our Future’ initiative.
We explored more conventional incentives for reuse, such as giving 20¢ off a purchase, but we believe our customers are as concerned about environmental issues as we are and want to create bigger impact with their purchasing decisions. By launching ’Your Cup Our Future’, the Coffeeangel team and our customers will not only help the environment by reducing the amount of single-use cups entering landfill, but also by donating to Friends of the Earth Ireland, we will address the larger issues of working towards a cleaner, healthier and greener world for both ourselves and future generations.”
Friends of the Earth is Ireland’s largest environmental campaigning organization and part of the world’s largest grassroots environmental network, working in over 70 countries.
In Ireland, Friends of the Earth is primarily focused on addressing climate change by encouraging clean energy and stopping dirty energy projects, including through their involvement in the recently successful campaign to ban fracking and by leading an 8-year effort to enact Ireland’s first climate legislation so the Government can no longer leave climate action on the long finger.
Right now, Friends of the Earth is actively working to get the Irish Government to facilitate community ownership of renewable energy, so Irish communities can avail of the solar rooftop revolution taking place around the world. They’ve also tackled the waste problem as Green Messengers at Electric Picnic music festival for the past three years and recently began to address Ireland’s relationship with nature and pollinators with their award-winning Bee-Friendly garden at Bloom 2017.
Sustainability and the impact from global warming are issues that those in the speciality coffee industry like Coffeeangel are all too familiar with, particularly when sourcing coffee beans from increasingly climate challenged coffee-growing regions. As part of ‘Your Cup Our Future’, Coffeeangel is now selling stylish, glass KeepCups in their premises and online, and will donate 20¢ to Friends of the Earth each time any clean KeepCup is used to purchase a coffee beverage in their shops.
Friends of the Earth’s Head of Communications, Dr. Cara Augustenborg, welcomed Coffeeangel’s initiative, explaining: “Coffeeangel’s decision to encourage reusable cups through a charitable donation scheme is an innovative approach to a waste crisis within the coffee sector. They’re incentivising reuse and supporting our environmental campaigning in Ireland. We’re grateful for their initiative and to their customers who avail of this new scheme to allow us to keep working for a world where both people and nature thrive.”
- A link to the 1-minute promotional video of Coffeeangel’s new ‘Your Cup Our Future’ initiative with interviews from Coffeeangel’s Karl Purdy and Friends of the Earth’s Cara Augustenborg is here.
- Today, the Goverment proposed a 15₵ levy on disposable coffee cups to address this problem (more information here). Minister Naughten previously commented on the problem of single-use containers, citing that 2 million disposable coffee cups a day are going into landfills in Ireland, in a speech to The Dail in July 2017 here,
- Concerns expressed by the Minister and the Green Party led to the Waste Reduction Bill to ban single use coffee cups, which is currently with the Oireachtas environment committee for further scrutiny. More information here.
- KeepCup is an Australian brand developed by Abigail and Jamie Forsyth, a sister brother team who were dismayed at the large volume of waste that resulted from their Melbourne based café. Research conducted by Canadian chemist, Dr Martin Hocking found the break-even energy requirement to manufacture a reusable plastic cup versus a paper cup over a lifetime use was under 15 uses. Disposable cups are lined with polyethylene and have a polystyrene lid, there is enough plastic in 28 disposable cups to make one small KeepCup.
- Coffeeangel’s Glass KeepCups will be available for purchase online at coffeeangel.com and in all shops from Monday, November 6th.
- RSP: Coffeeangel Glass KeepCup 235ml / 8oz for €18 or 330ml / 12oz for €20
- Coffeeangel is a group of Speciality Coffee shops, 100% Irish owned, based in Dublin and recognised as one of the leading Speciality Coffee shops in the world. Coffeeangel cafes are located at:
- Custom House Quay, Dublin 1
- 16 South Anne Street, Dublin 2
- 27 Pembroke Street Lower, Dublin 2
- 15 South Leinster Street, Dublin 2
- 3 Trinity Street, Dublin 2