The Singapore based coffee chain has committed to stopping 80 tonnes of plastic waste from entering oceans as part of its efforts to become a ‘plastic neutral’ company
Workers at the Green Worms project in Kerala, India, which works to collect, sort, and recycle plastic waste in partnership with CleanHub | Photo credit: CleanHub
Flash Coffee is building on a pledge to tackle plastic waste from its operations. The technology-focused coffee chain is collaborating with start-up CleanHub and its global network of plastic collection projects to ‘neutralise’ its plastic impact for all ‘past, present and future purchases’ across its 200+ stores.
As part of the partnership, Flash Coffee has pledged to recover 80 tonnes of plastic waste with CleanHub, with all orders automatically facilitating the recovery of an equal amount of plastic waste.
Customers can also add $0.20 to their order on the Flash Coffee app to enable the recovery of ten times more plastic than is needed to ‘neutralise’ the impact of a single plastic cup.
Flash Coffee also says it is trialling the switch from plastic cups to PPE-lined paper cups at its two stores in Japan, with a view to expanding the pilot across the region in 2022.
CleanHub operates global partnerships to facilitate the recovery and recycling of plastic waste around the world. The German non-profit estimates 11 million tonnes of plastic waste enter the world’s oceans every year.
It will work with Indonesian firm GOT BAG which processes plastic waste into fabric for backpacks, and India’s Green Worms, which works with women to sort and recycle plastic waste in the state of Kerala, as part of its partnership with Flash Coffee.
“Sustainability is an incredibly important topic for Flash Coffee, and our CleanHub
collaboration that goes beyond plastic neutrality is just the beginning of our journey. We are
glad to be able to include our customers in our mission, and harness this collective power to
create a larger positive environmental impact that recovers more plastic and leads to cleaner oceans. Our team remains committed to protecting the environment and minimising our impact wherever possible, and we are consistently reviewing supply chain upstream and downstream processes, product designs, in-store initiatives and beyond to understand how we can do more. We look forward to unveiling more sustainability-focused campaigns and partnerships with like-minded brands in the future,” said David Brunier, CEO and Founder of Flash Coffee.
Disposable coffee cup waste has become a huge challenge for café businesses around the world balancing convenience and the desire to reduce single-use waste. Researchers estimate
that 250-300 billion single-use and disposable coffee cups are used around the world every year, with around 50 billion discarded in the US alone.
In March 2020, the world’s largest coffee chain Starbucks said it would be ‘shifting away’
from single-use plastics at its 34,000+ stores by switching to reusable cup schemes. In Canada’ the A&W restaurant chain recently introduced fully-compostable
takeaway coffee cups at some of its 1,000+ stores.