| UK

SSP Group removes plastic coffee cup lids from own-brand UK café chains

New plastic-free lids will be rolled-out across Upper Crust, Ritazza, AMT Coffee and Camden Food Co. locations across the UK and will lead to the removal of over eight million single-use plastic items annually, according to the travel concession operator

An Upper Crust store at Marylebone Station, London | Photo credit: via Shutterstock


London-based SSP Group has introduced plastic-free disposable coffee cup lids across at its own-brand venues in the UK

The travel concession operator, which controls brands including Upper Crust, Ritazza, AMT Coffee and Camden Food Co. and said the move will remove an estimated eight million single-use plastic items from its own-brand supply chain each year. 

The new lids are made of bagasse – a fibrous material derived from sugar cane. 

“This is a significant step forward in our sustainability journey. Making the move to bagasse lids not only reduces our reliance on plastic but, because the plants can regrow, we are securing the longevity of our supply chain from renewable sources,” said Kari Daniels, CEO UK & Ireland, SSP Group. 

The move to implement plastic-free lids forms part of SSP Group’s pledge to remove all unnecessary single-use plastics from its own-brand packaging and ensure packaging is 100% reusable, recyclable or compostable by 2025. SSP Group has already transitioned cold beverage cups in its company-owned cafés to recycled polyethylene terephthalate (RPET) material.  

Alongside a reduction in single-use plastic across its stores, SSP Group is also targeting a 60% reduction in Scope 1 and 2 GHG emissions (produced from direct operations and energy usage respectively) by 2032 from a 2019 baseline, and a 35% reduction in Scope 3 supply chain emissions within the same timeframe. 

In September 2023, SSP Group’s net-zero greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions targets were approved by the by Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) – the global body for validating emissions reductions targets in line with the latest climate science. 

SSP Group also owns and operates the Soul & Grain, Café Local and Millie’s Cookies brands in the UK. The business’ licensed store portfolio includes Starbucks, Greggs, M&S Simply Food and Burger King. 

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