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Starbucks starts to wind down disposable cup use around the world

The coffee chain says it wants to create a ‘cultural movement’ towards reusable coffee cup usage at its stores around the world as it outlines measures to reduce waste and its carbon footprint

Starbucks wants to make it more convenient for customers to their bring reusable cups in-store | Photo credit: Starbucks

Starbucks has outlined new initiatives to help reduce waste and carbon emissions across its global portfolio of stores. To enable the company to meet its ambitious goal to reduce waste and operational carbon emissions by 50% by 2030, Starbucks said it was ‘shifting away’ from single-use plastics and piloting reusable cup programs in six markets around the world.
The Seattle-based coffee chain said that customers at stores in the US and Canada, where it operates around 17,000 stores, would be able use their own reusable cup for every visit by the end of 2023. By 2025, Starbucks says it wants to ‘create a cultural movement towards reusables’ making it convenient for customers to bring their own cup to stores, including drive-thru locations.  
“We have a bold long-term sustainability vision and ambitious goals for 2030,” said Starbucks president and CEO, Kevin Johnson. “Starbucks partners around the world are passionate about protecting our planet and are at the very centre of driving the innovation that enables us to give more than we take from the planet.”
As part of its sustainability drive, Starbucks has also partnered with Volvo to provide electric vehicle charging points at some of its stores in the US. The pilot programme will see Starbucks install up to 15 Volvo-branded charge points along the 1,350-mile route from the Denver area to the coffee company’s Seattle headquarters.
In January 2020, Starbucks outlined an ambitious target to become a ‘resource positive’ company by 2030, including a 50% reduction across carbon emissions from direct operations and supply chains, water consumption, and waste sent to landfill.
In June 2021, Starbucks announced it would begin trialling a resuable cup initiative across the UK, France and Germany. The Cup-Share scheme involves customers paying a small deposit for a cup that can be used up to 30 times before being returned to stores.

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