The West Midlands brews up support for coffee cup recycling bins

The latest YouGov research shows people living in the West Midlands, including Shrewsbury, Bridgnorth and Oswestry are keen to go green. A staggering 87% would use a purpose-built bin to ensure paper takeaway cups are recycled. Almost half (47%) would even be willing to hold onto their cup for longer if they knew they would pass a purpose-built bin, and 20% would go out of their way to use a purpose-built bin.
Underpinned by insight into coffee cups disposal habits and with trials supported by partners such as Costa and Starbucks, Veolia’s national coffee cup solution aims to collect takeaway cups as soon as the consumer has finished their drink to reduce cup contamination and increase recycling rates. 
By capturing cups before they enter the general waste stream Veolia’s coffee cup solution aims to get a higher quality of material that can be reprocessed into a new product. This is good news considering 15% of those in the West Midlands buy at least one takeaway hot beverage a week, but only 13% of hot drink buyers the region use a reusable cup.
The solution is now available to existing customers nationwide and to potential new customers, as part of a packaged service, and offers multiple service options. These include a specialist designed in-house recycling bin, a bulk collection option and a post back service – which is available to all business types nationally.
The most common places for hot drink buyers in the West Midlands to dispose of their takeaway cups are: ‘on the go’ e.g. train station, service station, on a train etc. (40%), at home (33%) and in coffee shops (26%). More surprisingly, the ability to recycle a takeaway cup may even trump brand loyalty for up to 44% of buyer

Steve Mitchell, Regional Director for Veolia West Midlands, comments: “It's great to see 87% of people in the West Midlands want to do their bit for the environment by recycling their coffee cup. We're delighted to make this possible by giving local customers and potential new customers a variety of collection options to suit their needs - to make sure as many coffee cups are recycled as possible. That said, whether we are a designer, manufacturer, vendor or consumer, we all have a part to play in making our packaging more environmentally friendly and ensuring our resources are kept in the loop for longer.”


Once the consumer has ‘Tipped-it, flipped it and stacked it’ – a process to ensure any remaining liquid is drained and the lid, sleeve and cup are separated – Veolia undertakes a further separation process to guarantee all rogue items have been removed. This is key because it will help to ensure a higher quality of material that can be reprocessed into a new product.
After the cups have been debagged, separated, checked for quality and contamination, and baled up they go on to further treatment at paper pulping facilities, which recover the fibres and separate the polymer plastic lining. Working with a number of outlets, the fibre could potentially be used to make a multitude of products such as egg boxes or cup holders given back out in stores or alternatively used in the manufacturing of cellulose-based insulation for homes.
To find out more information on Veolia’s coffee cup solution visit or call 0345 606 0460 and a member of our Customer Services Team will be happy to assist.