A Guide to Cup Recycling Bins 

Cup Recycling Bins

You’ve pledged to cut down on single-use items in your business. However, you probably won’t stop the influx of disposable coffee cups employees bring into the office first thing or at lunchtime. Unfortunately, many of these cups will end up in general waste bins and on landfill. Here’s our guide to recycling disposable cups in the workplace with the help of some trusty cup recycling bins.

Are disposable cups actually recyclable?

In a word, yes. Most disposable cups are made from paper and they have a waterproof lining. This lining is plastic (polyethylene). There are only a few recycling plants in the UK which have the technology to separate the different materials. Though while their make-up makes them tricky to recycle, it’s not impossible.

There is a caveat, however. You must dispose of them in designated cup recycling bins if you want to recycle them properly. Putting them in general waste bins or recycling bins for other waste streams will render them unrecyclable. 

Why recycle cups in the workplace?

Recycling cups in your workplace reduces the waste you send to landfill (hello, cost savings), and improves your business’s green credentials. Imagine if the 2.5 billion coffee cups we dispose of every year were turned into something new rather than ending up in landfill. Your business could make a very real contribution to protecting the planet and its resources now and in the future.

4 steps to introducing cup recycling in your workplace

Step 1: Review the state of play

Carry out a waste audit to work out the scale of the issue, how many cup recycling bins you need, where to locate them, and how often you want them collected. It’s also a good idea to determine where the cups are coming from. Are employees bringing them in from outside or are they from your canteen/coffee machines? If they are bought in by the business, consider making the switch to compostable or biodegradable cups.

Step 2: Talk to your waste contractor

Not all waste management contractors offer a cup collection service, but the number that do is growing all the time. The National Cup Recycling Scheme website provides this list of waste contractors who currently collect disposable cups:

  • ACM Environmental
  • Biffa
  • Bristol Waste Company
  • Bywaters
  • Cawleys
  • Chambers-Group
  • Cumbria Waste
  • DHL Envirosolutions
  • Enviro-Tek
  • First Mile
  • Forge Recycling
  • Grundon
  • Options Management Ltd
  • Pulse Environmental Limited
  • Reconomy
  • Recorra
  • Rishton Waste Paper
  • Select Environmental Services
  • Veolia
  • Waste Source
  • What Rubbish

Step 3: Find the cup recycling solution that works for you

Disposable paper cups must be emptied and disposed of in a separate container from other kinds of waste. Also, a YouGov survey found that 52% of consumers dispose of their coffee cup at work and 88% would use a designated cup recycling bin if one was available. This is why choosing the best cup recycling bins for your needs is crucial. Will you choose a Box Cycle Cup Recycling Bin which allows you to not only dispose of your cups but also excess liquids in one place? It’s a great choice for high-footfall areas. Or what about a Cup Collector with Internal Reservoir? This cup recycling bin allows you to dispose of paper, plastic, and polystyrene cups and is perfect for stationing next to vending machines. Then there’s the Envirocup - 100 Litre. With its eye-catching WRAP-compliant graphics and its generous capacity, there’s no excuse for anyone who fails to recycle their coffee cups.

Once you’ve chosen your perfect cup recycling bins, you need to think about where you’ll locate them. The canteen or staff room are common sense choices as are high footfall areas like reception areas or busy corridors.

Step 4: Make sure employees know about the initiative

Use everything at your disposal to educate employees about the new coffee cup recycling scheme. From internal newsletters to notice boards, communication is key. Don’t be afraid to shout about it on social media and your website either. Clients and customers love a business with sustainable ambitions.

Looking to start recycling coffee cups in your business? Investing in the right cup recycling bins is a great place to start. Ask our friendly sales team about the bins in our range.

For more interesting articles on recycling and waste management in the workplace, check out the rest of our blog and why not check out some of our most popular articles:

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