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PCRRG reports significant growth in used paper cups in UK

The Paper Cup Recovery and Recycling Group (PCRRG) said there has been a considerable progress in its 2020 goal in the UK of seeing more used paper cups that are recovered and recycled sustainably.

The organization is made up of member companies who had committed to significantly grow recycling rates of paper cups as part of a Paper Cups Manifesto.

PCRRG says that by the next three years it wants the greater majority of the UK population to have access to facilities that allow sustainable recovery and recycling of used paper cups.

PCRRG chairman Neil Whittall said: “Over the past year we have brought together diverse businesses across the paper cup supply chain, many of whom are competitors, to work together and share information in order to make progress towards our common goal.

“The PCRRG believes that whilst new and innovative solutions have a role to play, the most effective and scalable way of recycling used paper cups is to facilitate their widespread recovery and reprocessing.”

In its progress report, the PCRRG revealed that the current number of points where used paper cups can be recycled has hugely surged since July 2016.

The organization estimates that there are over 4000 points for the collection of cups for recycling in the UK. Included in those are Starbucks, Costa Coffee stores, McDonald’s restaurants and in London with several retailers accepting cups other than their own.

Apart from the initiative, PCRRG says that various third party operations like Simply Cups have expanded their networks and partnerships significantly over the last 12 months.

On the other hand, the organization added that recovered cups are now being recycled at several facilities like ACE UK and James Cropper.

PCRRG revealed details of a second project which will study how mainstream sorting of cups can be promoted at UK Materials Recovery Facilities (MRFs). This will be done by evaluating various MRF sorting systems in relations to used cups in order to streamline cup capture and to achieve high quality output material.