The Waste Free Series: The UK to Tackle All Plastic Waste by 2042


In this Waste Free Series blog we will be covering the changes to the UK’s 25 year environmental plan to reduce all plastic waste by 2042.

The recent changes show the UK’s commitment to eliminate waste like grocery bags, food packaging, and straws that litter the country and the seas around it.

One of their initiatives is to reduce the 2.5 billion disposable cups that are thrown away in the UK with a ‘latte levy’ which will be a 25p tax on disposable cups. Mary Creagh, chair of the Environmental Audit Committee says “The tax will help fund the UK’s reprocessing facilities and ultimately change peoples behaviours.”

Last year researchers at Cardiff University determined that charging 25p for every coffee cup would help eliminate the use of 300 million disposable cups a year.

Starbucks responded by introducing a 5p charge that will roll out in February at 20 to 25 locations in Central London.

Many coffee chains in the UK offer discounts to customers that bring their own reusable cup but currently only 1-2% of coffee drinks are responding to the discount. Pret A Manger also announced this week that they will be doubling their reusable cup discount from 25p to 50p.

The majority of disposable cups in the nation are not recyclable because of the plastic lining in the cup. They are also a large litter source and clog up waste disposal systems.

At Cupanion we think this is a ground breaking initiative and we look forward to the affects of the initiative.

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