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Unlike the traditional disposable coffee cup, the Recycle Me System will allow the non-recyclable inner-plastic lining to easily detach.
Daniel Von Appen Unsplash
Defend the Planet

An Australian Innovation Has Resolved the Takeaway Coffee Cup Recycling Conundrum

Why Global Citizens Should Care
Traditional coffee cups are considered non-recyclable due to the internal plastic waterproof lining. As such, coffee cups are some of the biggest pollution and landfill contributors. Global Citizen campaigns for environmental protection because doing so gives people the opportunity to live free from detrimental climate impacts. You can take action here.

An Australian business has produced a new single-use takeaway coffee cup with an unparalleled removable plastic inner coating in an attempt to curb one of the largest landfill contributors.

Unlike the traditional disposable coffee cup, the Recycle Me System by Detpak will allow the non-recyclable watertight plastic lining to simply separate from the coffee cups, which, in turn, allows the remaining material to be recycled and reprocessed as paper.

Take Action: Let’s Unplastic the Planet! Call on Countries to Help Protect Oceans

"Our Recycle Me System is a total end to end solution, turning takeaway cups into recycled paper products, and contributing to positive global environmental change," Detpak’s Marketing and Innovation Manager Tom Lunn stated.

The new cups will be rolled out initially throughout Australia, New Zealand and the United Kingdom in venues like Veneziano Coffee Roasters, Tim Adams Specialty Coffee, and in select Hungry Jack stores. Each venue will provide a Recycle Me waste bin for users to dispose of their cups.

"We’re excited to be trialing Detpak’s Recycle Me System in 20 of our stores across New South Wales and Victoria," Hungry Jack’s Director of Brand Claudia Cullen stated. "Using Recycle Me cups at these locations will save around three trees per store every year." 

Recycling organisation Shred-X will assist the cup-to-paper recycling system by collecting the cups from the waste bins, then removing the plastic lining and taking the exteriors to recycling plants.

Each year, 90% of Australia's one billion used takeaway cups end up in landfill. Similarly, throughout New Zealand, around 200 million cups make their way to rubbish lots each year. A report from the World Wildlife Fund in March revealed the UK is set to see a rise of more than a third in the number of single-use coffee cups that are discarded and a 20% increase in overall plastic waste by 2030.