Coffee chain Starbucks is set to trial recyclable and compostable cups in several cities around the world including London, after pressure from environmentalists to change its practices.
The company has announced that it wants to reduce the number of cups that end up in landfill. It distributes around 6bn cups a year around the world, which reportedly contain 10% recycled paper and plastic lining which makes them difficult to recycle.
The chain already offers a 10% discount to customers who use their own cups, but take-up has been relatively low.
Now it will trial recyclable and compostable packaging in London, a number of US cities and Vancouver in a bid to reduce waste.
The design of the new cups is expected to be influenced by the 12 winners of a joint competition held last year by Starbucks alongside McDonald’s and Closed Loop Partners to find more sustainable packaging solutions.
The latest announcement follows a decision last year by Starbucks to phase out plastic straws from all of its stores by 2020.
In a statement, chief executive Kevin Johnson said: “It is with great intention that we move forward with highly collaborative and innovative work to bring both recyclable and compostable cups to scale around the world.
“We are reimagining the future for Starbucks and for the more than 30,000 communities we serve each day with a great sense of responsibility for a more sustainable planet.”