Circular Economy

Muffin Break wants to put an end to coffee cup waste

Muffin Break wants to put an end to coffee cup waste

Muffin Break has announced its commitment to sustainability and the community, and to reducing its environmental impact with the launch of two new initiatives aimed at reducing the coffee cup waste stream.

For every takeaway coffee or hot drink sold at Muffin Break, they’ll pay to have one cup recycled. With 210 stores across the country, Muffin Break believes it can take 11 million cups out of landfill.

Most takeaway coffee cups can’t be recycled easily, due to the combination of paper and waterproof plastic, so Muffin Break have partnered with Simply Cups, who work with innovators to solve this very problem. The company collects disposable coffee cups from all over the country and gives them a second lease on life as new recycled and recyclable products.

Muffin Break will also be introducing a whole new range of colours for its signature KeepCups – the world’s first ‘barista standard’ reusable cup, which is durable, lightweight and aims to replace disposable cups completely.

Available for purchase in stores, the KeepCups comes in a variety of cool colour combinations. Customers who choose to reuse also receives a 30c discount on coffee every time they bring in a reusable cup.

“Recycling was an important consideration in designing the KeepCup, which is why it is made from a single injection mould and single material parts. This means that the components can be separated and easily recycled,” said Natalie Brennan, Muffin Break general manager.

“Recycling and recycled materials are important, but recycling can be expensive, both in terms of cost and impact on the environment. The principle solution to the problem is to design a product that is really reusable and fit for purpose, and that can then be recycled at the end of its life.”

As a result of their commitment to reduce their carbon footprint in stores across Australia, Muffin Break are now proud to announce they have also partnered with the Responsible Cafes movement, which is an initiative of café owners and coffee lovers who share a culture of conscious and sustainable consumption.

Responsible Cafes connects thoughtful cafes with conscious consumers through one simple idea – cafes can reduce or eliminate disposable coffee cups by offering a discount to customers with reusable takeaway cups.

“We are committed to the reduction of single-use packaging for coffee cups, but for those customers that the convenience of singe-use is what they want, then we will pay to ensure that the cup they use is correctly recycled and the materials are reused,” Brennan said.

“Responsible Cups will help us communicate to our customers about bringing their own cups, and we are offering a 30c discount if they do, while Simply Cups are our partners for the recycling side of things.

“We currently use 11 million coffee take-away cups per year, so we are paying to ensure that number of cups are properly recycled, but we aren’t stopping at just cups.

“We are also focused on the reduction of plastic straws, plastic cutlery, plastic bags, coffee ground waste and food waste. This could amount to as much as 75 tonnes of waste going to landfill per year.”

Muffin Break will be building a Greenhouse at the Entertainment Quarter, with construction expected to begin in September. The initiative is aligned with Green Square School, whose students will be visiting to help build the Greenhouse with collected plastic bottles.

Having kicked off this August, Muffin Break has:

  • Partnered with Simply Cups to recycle 11 million cups;
  • Partnered with Responsible Cafes, offering customers a 30c discount on their coffee when they come in with a keep cup;
  • Offers no extra charge for alternative milks including soy, almond, coconut and lactose milks; and
  • Is in the process of creating a Greenhouse to donate to a local school.