Friday 01 March 2024

M&S launches first fully recyclable paper fibre cup and lid in its Cafés

M&S first retailer to roll out fully recyclable paper fibre cup and lid across its Cafes. Plastic lining in takeaway cups means they cannot be easily recycled. M&S’ new cups and lids made from 100% paper and certified plastic free which can be recycled in household and on the go recycling. The change will remove over 20 million units of plastic from M&S’ food business

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LONDON, UK – M&S Food has launched a new paper fibre coffee cup becoming the first major high street coffee retailer to offer its coffee and all hot drinks in 100% paper, plastic-free and easily recyclable coffee cups and lids for customers.

The brand new and exclusive cup is new to market and available from today across twenty sites including M&S Cafés, vended coffee points, Marketplaces within its Foodhalls such as Stratford City, London, Leeds White Rose and Cheshunt, and will be rolling out to every M&S Café in the coming months. From classic lattes to silky-smooth cappuccinos each cup features a striking design with the banner ‘100% recyclable’ proudly displayed.

Currently regular paper coffee cups cannot be easily recycled due to the thin layer of plastic coating on the inside that stops contents from seeping into the paper. As a result, coffee cups cannot go into household recycling and to date have required specific takeback schemes and specific recycling processes, operated by only a small number of recyclers in the UK.

M&S has already introduced its unique paper fibre lids earlier this year which have had a strong customer response. Both M&S’ new cups and lids are the only cups on the high street made from innovative organic materials which can be recycled like any other paper products. They use a lining material which replicates the same barrier effect of plastic and performed just as strongly as plastic in independent testing and assurance but without the same long lasting environmental impact if not properly recycled. The material has a plastic free accreditation and ensures even if the cup ends up in landfill it will break down and leave no harmful plastics behind.

Reducing plastic packaging is one of the key issues M&S customers care strongly about and the retailer has a leading track record of taking action. M&S has a target of removing one billion units of plastic from the packaging of its food business where the majority is used and last year removed 75 million units.

M&S’ market leading paper fibre coffee cup and lid will result in 20 million units of plastic packaging removed each year from its food business. The move also follows M&S’ introduction of reusable paper bags at tills across every M&S store offering a sustainable and recyclable alternative for customers.

M&S currently offers a 50p discount on all hot drinks in its cafes for customers who bring their own reusable cup which is the most sustainable option. However, when this isn’t possible M&S’ new cups are a planet friendly alternative.

M&S is one of the largest high street coffee retailers in the UK with over 300 cafes. As part of its store estate transformation, which has delivered over 80 M&S Foodhall renewals, a growing number of M&S Cafés are offering takeaway options which are performing strongly with customers.

M&S Café has over 1000 trained master baristas ready to prepare its delicious coffee, and also offers a seasonal limited edition single origin blend with flavour notes of jam, citrus and honey. M&S only offers 100% Fairtrade tea and coffee, paying more Fairtrade premium for tea and coffee than any other UK retailer. Alongside this M&S’ Cup of Ambition scheme donates 1p for every hot drink sold by the retailer to tea and coffee producers and farmers for leadership and climate resilience training, empowering suppliers to create positive change for their businesses and communities.

Alex Freudmann, Managing Director at M&S Food: “Our customers look to us to lead on the environment and we are constantly aiming to raise the bar and lower our impact on the planet. With one in every two of us visiting a coffee shop several times a week the long-lasting damage coffee cups can have on the planet without being properly recycled is huge. That’s why we were determined to bring a sustainable alternative to what’s out there today, and we’re proud to offer customers the first fully recyclable coffee cup on the high street. For me our coffee now ticks three big boxes – it’s delicious, it supports our growers and suppliers with every purchase, and now it comes in easy to recycle cups too.”

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