Tuesday 27 September 2022

UK Government rejects calls for charge on disposable coffee cups

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The British Coffee Association welcomes the UK Government ’s decision to reject the proposed 5p tax on paper cups as it does not provide a workable solution to meet the important issue of increasing the number of paper cups that are able to be recycled in the UK.

The UK coffee industry is developing important initiatives that will more comprehensively address consumer behaviour and improve recycling technology.

The 5p levy was proposed by the Liberal Democrats in September. The party claimed that a charge would result in over 2 billion fewer cups in the UK.

Chris Stemman, Executive Director of the British Coffee Association, commented: “We recognise the success of the 5p plastic bag charge in relation to the challenge associated with managing plastic bags.

However, the use of paper cups and plastic bags are inherently different and simply introducing a 5p tax on cups will not necessarily address the behaviour change required to reduce waste and littering or provide the infrastructure required to sustainably recover and enable the recycling of paper cups.

We are working with our members and with the Paper Cup Recovery and Recycling Group to look at important initiatives, such as Hubbub’s current #1MoreShot scheme in Manchester, which will help us to understand what will influence consumers to reduce cup use and recycle more widely.”

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