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Costa Coffee trials reusable cup share scheme in the UK

Costa Coffee launches a reusable cup scheme across 14 Glasgow stores in partnership with Austella's Valeri blockchain platform

Costa Coffee has launched its reusable cup scheme trial at 14 Glasgow stores | Photo credit: Costa Coffee

UK-based Costa Coffee is trialling a new reusable cup scheme across 14 stores in Glasgow.  The Borrow, Use, Reuse, Take Back (BURT) initiative will last six months. 

Customers can set up an account for a one-off £5 fee, which can then be accessed by scanning a QR code on a BURT cup. Participants will then receive a washed and reused cup with each new order. 

Costa Coffee will collect data on the scheme’s usage using the Valeri blockchain platform provided by digital agency, Austella. The coffee chain will also assess customer feedback before a planned roll-out across the UK, where it operates more than 2,700 stores.  

“We are excited to be the first national coffee company to be offering a solution like BURT, to further incentivise the uptake of reusable cups in our stores,” said Neil Lake, Managing Director, Costa Coffee UK and Ireland. 

The issue of disposable coffee cup waste has gained prominence in the UK in recent years, where 2.5 billion are used every year and just one in 400 is recycled. 

In June 2018, Boston Tea Party became the first major coffee chain in the UK to completely ban the use of disposable coffee cups across its 23 UK stores. 

In June 2021, the UK’s second largest coffee chain, Starbucks, announced it would introduce its reusable 'Cup-Share' programme across 3,840 stores in 43 EMEA countries by 2025, with an initial trial at stores in the UK, France and Germany.

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