Coffee drinkers and cafes in Canary Wharf are being urged to recycle their cups and grounds as part of a environmental campaign to curb waste.
The Wake up and smell the coffee eco campaign run by Canary Wharf Management Limited aims to see all coffee waste generated over the 128-acre area recycled.
Coffee lids, cups and grounds from more than 300 bars, cafes and restaurants will all be recycled in an effort to keep the estate clean and green. This means tonnes of coffee waste will be repurposed and have a second life.
Manager of Le Pain Quotidien, Dominiki Zinko told EastLondonlines: “As of last week we have been putting all the coffee waste in separate bins, it’s much better. The cups we used were all ready recycled but the fact now they are being further recycled is brilliant. I think if other coffee shops do this too then we are really looking at a cleaner Canary Wharf.”
Peter Goodwin, Director of Simply Cups, the company who will be recycling the waste, said: “The sheer scale of the Canary Wharf Estate makes this a really exciting scheme, where we will see a ‘new norm’ with regards to coffee waste. The scheme keeps Canary Wharf at the forefront of innovation while delivering real value to its workers, visitors and residents.”
Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall first introduced the idea last year campaigning over the UK and calling major coffee chains like Starbucks and Costa to address the problem. It is very hard to recycle coffee cups as they have been treated with chemical polyacetylene. He said at the time to River Cottage: “They are barely recyclable at all – in the everyday, commonly understood sense of the word. They cannot be recycled through any of the normal public waste collection services – who are consistently diverting them to be incinerated or sent to landfill.”
105,000 people work in Canary Wharf according to the Financial Times and a study from Tassimo stated 80 per cent of the capital drinks coffee daily. So if eight out of ten people bought a coffee everyday out of this workforce, that’s approximately 84,000 cups of coffee per day distributed in just Canary Wharf.
Valeria Piacentini of L’Orchidee coffee, metres away from one of the recycling points told EastLondonlines: “Yeah it’s a good thing for us. We are a small outlet that only sells takeaway cups so this kind of thing is only going to improve the environment of the district.”
The initiative is proving popular amongst the commuters and coffee chains, and with approximately thousands of cups distributed per day across the 128 acre site, this will give the waste a second life.