Bristol café to ban takeaway cups

Well played,

Boston Tea Party.

This independently owned café chain is planning to ban disposable cups completely from their sites as of 1 June.

With 21 locations across the South West, the Bristol-born group reckons this will hit them with a revenue loss of over a million pounds a year (about 5.2% of its total turnover of £19.8 million


Sam Roberts, owner and managing director of BTP says, “Lots of coffee chains are making pledges about how they plan to tackle cup waste in the future. But theirs is a future which is too far away. We need to stop right now. I’d stop tomorrow but I think it’s only fair to give our loyal customers and fantastic team a month to get used to the idea.”

The cafés will instead be offering an innovative loan cup scheme, where customers can borrow a cup and receive their deposit back on return. Of course, there’s also the option to bring your own reusable cup which the baristas will happily wash for you.

It’s a business risk,yes, but a hugely positive step in the right direction.


report from the

House of Commons Environmental Audit Committee

stated that only one in 400 of the estimated 2.5


plastic coated coffee cups used in the UK each year are recycled. For Sam, it’s a move that he hopes others will follow.

“We want to demonstrate to other operators that to make a difference, big change is needed.  We will make this work and we’ll share details of how we’ve done it with anyone who wants our help to do the same.  We dream of a future where our children marvel at the fact that pre-2018 we would regularly use a cup once and throw it away. The discarded cup could then take centuries to decompose. When you consider it in those terms, it really is senseless.”