IdealCup Founder Stephanie Fry [left] with Crystal Thompson from Wild Oats and Carterton District Council’s zero waste co-ordinator Jo Dean. PHOTO/SUPPLIED

GIANINA SCHWANECKE
gianina.schwanecke@age.co.nz

Carterton District Council kicked off plastic free July by launching their new cupcycling programme to support cafes in their bid to reduce the amount of waste being sent to landfills.

Page 42 Café and Gelato, Wild Oats Bakery Deli-Cafe and Café Ole have all signed up to join the IdealCup CupCycling movement with funding help from the council.

The scheme allows people to borrow a CupCycling cup when they purchase their coffee and then return the cup to any participating CupCycling cafe in NZ, the next time they buy a coffee.

The only payment required is an initial $5 bond to join the scheme, plus the price of your coffee – the cafe takes care of washing the cup when you return it and will also provide a free compostable lid each time.

The council’s zero waste co-ordinator, Jo Dean, said it was exciting Carterton was the first place in Wairarapa able to take part in a movement which had proven successful in other towns around New Zealand.

“This is an easy and convenient way for cafes, their customers and the council to work together to help our environment,” she said.

“We approached cafes around Carterton to see if they wanted to partner up as part of their waste minimisation schemes and we were really pleased these three cafes were eager to join the movement.”

The council paid for 50 cups for each of the three participating cafes to help with the initial set-up, and the cafes can then purchase more later as the demand increases.

Founder of the IdealCup programme Stephanie Fry came up with the idea at her own cafe in Motueka and had now launched the initiative nationwide across 14 regions.

Carterton came on board after she delivered a presentation at a waste forum hosted by the district in 2018.

“This system is not about the cafe or coffee supplier’s brand, it’s about everyone working together to divert one-use cups from landfill,” Fry said.

“I’m super excited Carterton has decided to join our movement and it was great to be there to celebrate the launch with them.”

The cup designs are unique to each region and it’s hoped that as more people sign on the Carterton cafes will include a mix of other cups in addition to their own with the teal blue council logo.

Disposable cups can’t be recycled because they are contaminated by coffee and often contain plastic by-products.