Coffee Cup Recycling Launch

Brixton BID team members with Cllr Claire Holland and Cllr Irfan Mohammed at Brixton Coffee Cup Recycling Launch.

A brand new coffee cup recycling programme launches in Brixton today as part of The Cup Fund – the U.K.’s largest grant fund to boost and scale up coffee cup recycling across the UK.

Re:Brixton, is one of 12 programmes chosen by The Cup Fund to receive funding, which will position Brixton as the first town centre in Lambeth to introduce a coffee cup recycling scheme. The project, which is being launched by Brixton BID in partnership with First Mile and Lambeth Council, will see new brightly coloured coffee cup recycling bins in fifteen independent coffee shops across the town centre.  The project aims to recycle 150,000 cups in its first year.

New research1 by the environmental charity, Hubbub, reveals the public are still confused about paper cup recycling, as three out of four people wrongly believe that paper cups can be recycled in the same way as other paper and card. However, because cups have a plastic lining that stops hot drinks from leaking, they need to be collected separately from other paper goods.

The Cup Fund was established to meet this need and is the U.K.’s largest grant fund to bolster and scale paper cup recycling. The London programmes represent five of the 12 schemes across the country selected to receive grants of between £50,000 and £100,000 to develop long-term infrastructure. The Cup Fund is financed by Starbucks, from the 5p charge introduced on paper cups in 2018, to encourage customers to increase their use of reusable cups and avoid the charge.

To coincide with the launch of the Re:Brixton Campaign, Brixton BID will also be installing 32 lamp post banners, to further encourage people in Brixton to recycle, reuse, refill and reduce waste. These banners will not only highlight coffee cup recycling but will cover plastic bottles and food waste also.


Michael Smith Brixton BID
Michael Smith, Brixton BID

Michael Smith, Director of Brixton BID said: “Business sustainability is important to the Brixton Bid and to businesses in Brixton. This Coffee Cup Recycling Project being launched with help from Hubbub and Starbucks and with our local partners First Mile and Lambeth Council is an important part of our drive for a sustainable Brixton. Taking 20% of all paper coffee cup in use out of the system is just the beginning. We want to with this project spearhead more sustainable behaviours in Brixton that would see more people using; RESUABLE Coffee Cups; RECYCLING paper cups and necessary waste; REDUCING emissions from transportation and food waste and REFILLING personal water bottles to combat single use plastics. Join our Coffee Cup Recycling Scheme. Help to make Brixton sustainable.”




Gavin Ellis, Hubbub

Gavin Ellis, Director and Co-Founder of Hubbub, said: “While reusable cups are the most environmentally friendly choice, billions of paper cups are still being used each year and most aren’t currently recycled. We know that people generally want to do the right thing with recycling and it was surprising to find that three in four people are still unaware that cups need to be collected separately from normal card and paper. By using the Hubbub and Starbucks Cup Fund to raise awareness and introduce eye-catching cup recycling points in high footfall locations, we hope we can encourage people in Brixton to dispose of their cups in the right bins and ensure that they are recycled.”

Haley Drage Vice President, Public Affairs, Starbucks EMEA, said: “Addressing the issue of waste in and out of our stores is a global priority, and we are tackling this from a number of angles within the organisation—whether it’s reducing the amount of single-use materials we introduce to begin with, encouraging customers to adopt reusables or investing in an alternative cup solution that could transform the industry. Starbucks is proud to be working with Hubbub and The Cup Fund winners to launch five new recycling programmes across the capital, increasing the ease and availability of recycling for Londoners.”

If you would like to get involved in this project please email for more information.

For more information on The Cup Fund, the winners and their progress visit or #InTheLoop.

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