Charge on coffee cups to boost recycling proposed by United Kingdom lawmakers

Call for 'latte levy' to cut disposable coffee cup waste

A 25p latte levy should be introduced on disposable coffee cups to cut waste, MPs have said.

It added that if disposable coffee cups aren't all fully recyclable by 2023, they should be banned.

Committee chair Mary Creagh said: "The UK throws away 2.5bn disposable coffee cups every year; enough to circle the planet five and a half times".

Disposable cups can not be recycled by the normal systems because they are made from cardboard with a tightly bonded polyethylene liner, which is hard to remove, and means they are not accepted by paper mills.

Whether coffee shops want to adopt a "latte levy" is a different question.

And, the committee also stated that the tax should go towards improving recycling and reprocessing facilities.

In a recently published report, a House of Commons committee said the Government had "sat on its hands" as disposable coffee cup waste has grown to an estimated 25,000 tons per year.

"Whether or not the Government is willing to consider a levy, there is still a lot more work to be done by all the stakeholders involved to develop a sensible solution to this very modern waste problem". It was the EAC's recommendations of banning microbeads that bolstered government into doing so (the full ban comes into effect this coming July).

Back in 2016 it trialled applying a 50p discount for customers using reusable cups, but it said that this "did not move the needle in the way we thought it might".

However, the London trial, which will run for three months starting in February, is an important first step by the United States chain - and the proposals are a victory for the Daily Mail's Curb the Cups campaign.

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Spokesman Mike Turner said: 'The paper cups we manufacture in the United Kingdom are sustainably sourced, responsibly produced, recyclable and. are being recycled.

The party's environment spokesman, Tim Farron, said: "I'm glad our call for a coffee cup charge is gaining traction".

"Coffee shops have been pulling the wool over customers' eyes, telling us their cups can be recycled, when less than 1 percent are", Ms. Creagh said regarding the confusion that coffee chains have created about coffee cups being eligible for recycling.

"Taxing the morning coffee run will not address the issue of litter but it will hurt consumers and impact already struggling high streets".

Instead coffee chains perpetuated customer confusion that cups are widely recyclable when they are not.

Improve labelling to educate consumers about how to dispose of their cup.

The government plans to produce a new plastics policy later in the year. Any stores that have in-house recycling options should also label their cups to reflect that.

The promotion of a charge for disposable cups, rather than a discount for customers bringing reusable cups, comes down to a question of effectiveness, according to the Committee.

Even when consumers place coffee cups in recycling bins, there's now no way for recycling plants to recycle them.

Now the Environmental Audit Committee's plan to bring in a tax on disposable coffee cups is in the proposal stage. "Only by treating this issue as one that is the responsibility of both industry and consumers will reuse become the norm in place of single-use and throw away".

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