Coffee beans add zing to Zero Waste journey

22 March 2019

Green is the new black, especially if it’s black coffee!

In an effort to reduce waste from single-use coffee cups, three coffee shops have signed up for a trial of the Taranaki Cup Library: Elixr, Emmalou and Café Green Door.

And it’s easy to take part in this Zero Waste initiative. Just grab a New Zealand-made reusable cup for $2 with your next coffee, then swap it for a clean one when you return for another drink. If you forget your cup, just get a new one for $2 and bring both back next time for a refund. 

The Taranaki Cup Library is the brainchild of local Mel Hunt, with support from NPDC.

“The goal is to reduce the amount of waste we generate just from takeaway coffee cups,” says Mel.

“Many takeaway cups are compostable, not recyclable, but they still end up in recycling bins. We all know it’s time to start changing our daily habits that create unnecessary waste. Coffee is just one small step in a larger evolution of waste minimisation, and small changes like this one can make a difference as we work as a community toward becoming a Zero Waste region.”

Kiwis throw out about 800,000 paper coffee cups every day, and NPDC Manager Resource Recovery Kimberley Hope says initiatives like the Taranaki Cup Library could put a big dent in that number.

“It’s fantastic to see a local resident taking on the Zero Waste challenge by starting up a programme like this. We’re really happy to support her and the cafes that take part,” says Ms Hope.

The Taranaki Cup Library is starting with three cafes to identify any challenges and help fine-tune how it operates. If the trial goes well, Mel will look to bring more coffee shops on board.

Be sure to check out Taranaki Cup Library on Facebook and Instagram.
Green team: NPDC Manager Resource Recovery Kimberley Hope and Mel Hunt with the new Green is the New Black cups.