10 million coffee cups rescued from landfill
Australia's leading cup recycling program celebrates milestone
“Australians love their coffee so it’s vital that they can easily and reliably recycle their disposable coffee cup and reduce the huge number of takeaway cups that currently end up in landfill each year,” Assistant Minister Evans said. “Rather than just being put into the rubbish bin and ending in landfill, Simply Cups collect and then reprocess the used coffee cups, transforming them into new items like outdoor furniture, coffee cup trays, and even traffic solutions like roadside kerbing.”
“Simply Cups’ recycling scheme now collects almost 1 million cups every month Across Australia, with nearly 1000 collection points at 7-Eleven stores, cafes, hotels, hospitals and universities,” said Assistant Minister Evens. “Australians care deeply about recycling, and disposing of coffee cups at a designated Simply Cups collection point, they will be doing their part to increase recycling and reduce waste. This is a great practical example of Australia’s growing circular economy in action, and shows how we will all benefit from an invigorated waste and recycling industry.”
Founded by circular economy specialist Closed Loop, Simply Cups has installed almost 1,000 cup collection points across Australia in less than three years, including 632 7-Eleven stores nationwide. Rob Pascoe, Closed Loop Managing Director, said Simply Cups aims to make cup recycling mainstream and to recycle 100 million cups every year.
“Simply Cups is a perfect example of the circular economy in action,” said Pascoe. “It is a practical solution that increases recycling rates and reduces waste, while creating supply and demand for products made from recycled material. It is fantastic to see so many people embracing Simply Cups, because it really is a win-win for the environment and the economy.”
“Our circular economy will grow quickly if people choose Australian-made and recycled over other alternatives. After all, recycling doesn’t actually happen when you put an item in a bin, it only happens when that item is given a second life,” Pascoe added.
7-Eleven is the pioneering partner of Simply Cups and leads the way with the most collection points and most cups diverted from landfill (2.7 million cups since 2018).
“Saving 10 million coffee cups from landfill is a fantastic achievement, but it’s just the tip of the iceberg,” said 7-Eleven Chief Executive Officer, Angus McKay. “We encourage customers to up the ante and deliver any brand of used coffee cup or straw to our cup collection points at store, and we’ll make sure they get recycled via Simply Cups.”
“We agree that the best option is not to create waste in the first place. We encourage reusable coffee cups and have an rCUP available for purchase, which is a reusable coffee cup made from recycled coffee cups. We also regularly run promotions on Slurpee bottles to encourage the use of those instead of paper cups.”
“In addition, we’re rolling out a Cup Rescue community program to fund the recycling of cups for small business, community groups and schools by providing them with their own cup collection units. This is perfect for organisations that are either too small to set up their own recycling with Simply Cups or are community organisations like schools,” said McKay.
As well as 7-Eleven stores, Simply Cups collection points can now be found in cafes (including Muffin Break), office buildings and shopping centres across Australia. Simply Cups has grown exponentially since starting in May 2017, collecting 1 million cups in the first 12 months and 10 million cups within 3 years.
“This is a great practical example of Australia’s growing circular economy in action, and shows how we will all benefit from an invigorated waste and recycling industry.”
Trevor Evans MP, Assistant Minister for Waste & Environmental Management
“It is fantastic to see so many people embracing Simply Cups, because it really is a win-win for the environment and the economy.”
Rob Pascoe, Managing Director, Closed Loop
"We encourage customers to up the ante and deliver any brand of used coffee cup or straw to our cup collection points at store, and we'll make sure they get recycled via Simply Cups"
Angus McKay, CEO of 7-Eleven