February 2022

It’s time to talk about cups. Specifically, paper cups and reusable cups. It may not come as a surprise to you that hot-drinks paper-cups are tricky items. They are made to withstand a hot liquid for a minimum amount of time and as such are lined with a plastic of some description. This plastic (whatever it is made from) is bonded to the paper to make a robust, and convenient for the user, hot-drink cup. This is all great until time for disposal of said cup. And here it gets tricky. Unfortunately, recyclable cups are rarely recycled properly. Most recycling collections can’t deal with them and there are appallingly low statistics for how many paper cups are recycled into paper and plastic. Compostable cups don’t fare much better; facilities to deal with compostable cups are few and far between, so when they most likely find their way to landfill they take an extraordinary amount of time to degrade. Our collective need to drink coffee en-route is making a mockery of all the efforts we make in other parts of our lives to reduce, reuse and recycle.

So, we have decided to say no to the paper cup. And we’re super excited about it.

From the beginning of March, we will only be using reusable cups to make takeaway drinks. You’re welcome to bring your own (clean and dry please) reusable cup and we’ll be happy to make your drink into it. If you don’t have a reusable cup or would prefer that we provide an alternative, we have that covered. We will have a stock of loan cups which you can use on payment of the loan-cup-deposit. All you need to do is pay the deposit, take your coffee and bring back the cup. If you want a refund of your deposit when you bring back the cup, that is easy. Or if you want another coffee, you can return your cup to us when you’re ordering and we will make your coffee into a fresh loan cup, and so on. If you want to start participating in the loan-cup scheme before the end of the month, we have the reusable cups available in our shops now. All the finer details are on our website.

We are not the first to do this and we won’t be the last either. The Boston Tea Party (Bristol) and Ottos (Sevenoaks), to name just two, have been doing this for some time now and have been really helpful sharing their experience and advice with us – thank you both!

You might ask why, after quite a few years of takeaway coffee, we have decided to do this now and the answer is simple – it is the right thing for us to do and now is as good a time as any to do it. At the beginning of the first Covid lock-down there was a lot of talk about how everyone would make better choices and adjustments to look after our environment. There were inspiring quotes and cute memes and poetry and a great deal of feeling around how the pandemic might help us all realise the important things in life and so on. We stopped making drinks for weeks and months during the lock-downs and when we reopened properly we thought, why not make this change now? What if we take all those feelings and good intentions and turn them into saying no to paper cups? It’s taken a good few months and some Covid delays to sort the logistics but here we are.

We hope we will have your support. No doubt the workings of it all will take a bit of sorting out over the next few weeks and we will also need your patience. At the moment we’re busy hoping we have enough cups for everyone (fingers crossed). We have partnered with ecoffee cup®️ and they have been terrific in helping us prepare for what is a big change – look them up, they have a great FAQs and end-of-usability protocol.

For now, we have just a few more weeks of paper cup usage. If you are a take-away customer at our shops you can move onto the loan cup whenever you wish this month. Check out our website for the details about how it all works.

See you with your reusable,

Monmouth x