Recycling company First Mile has announced its new partnership with sustainable food packaging specialist, Huhtamaki, in a collaboration that aims to further increase the number of disposable coffee cups effectively recycled in the UK.
The partnership will see First Mile collecting used disposable cups from some of Huhtamaki’s customers throughout London and Birmingham from a variety of different coffee chains, restaurants, bars and other business premises throughout the cities.
Huhtamaki manufactures both recyclable and compostable paper cups both of which can be handled by this new service. All of its cups are made in the UK with 100% PEFC certified paper board from sustainably-managed forests.
The high-quality fibres are increasingly in demand in the paper industry and can be recycled up to seven times without losing their material integrity. There is already capacity to recycle every paper cup used in the UK through various paper mills such as James Cropper, DS Smith and alongside beverage cartons at the ACE UK Halifax facility.
Huhtamaki’s compostable cups will be processed via First Mile’s new compostable packaging recycling service, which will see them, along with other materials, transformed into nutrient-rich fertiliser. This new service correctly recycles cups at the end of their lives, realising the positive environmental intentions of Huhtamaki and those customers investing in their use.
Businesses taking advantage of having their used Huhtamaki cups collected for recycling will join the 25,000 companies that recycle over 65,000 tonnes of material in the five million collections that First Mile makes every year.
First Mile founder and CEO, Bruce Bratley, said: “With a growing awareness of recycling and sustainability, the PCRRG reports that paper cup recycling rates have increased from an estimated one in every 400 to one in every 25 in just two years and we’re keen to increase this further through the work we do. This partnership is a great collaboration, pairing Huhtamaki’s objective of driving long-term sustainability, with First Mile’s innovative approach to making recycling easy for businesses.”
Keith Crosley, Huhtamaki UK’s general manager, added: “The cups we manufacture in the UK are sustainably sourced, responsibly produced and fully recyclable. We recognise that more paper cups need to be recycled and we are actively working on this to further improve recycling rates. Working with First Mile is a fantastic partnership to enable our customers to have their paper cups collected recycled and turned into new products.”