24-25 Jul 2024

AWRE have committed to cutting the rubbish by recycling takeaway cups and lids with RecycleMe™

In April 2018 the Australian Government announced the Towards 2025 agenda, legislating all single-use packaging needs to be reusable, recyclable or compostable. Globally governments are moving at various speeds, however there is consistent and growing pressure from community and consumer groups to reduce the impact of packaging products ending up as litter or landfill.

Since the ABC TV series War on Waste drew attention to the fact that more than a billion takeaway cups are sent to landfill each year in Australia; consumers, cafés and businesses have taken large strides to reduce cup waste.

One business leading the way in tackling this crisis is Australian owned packaging manufacturer Detpak, which initiated a rollout of the RecycleMe™ cup and collection system in November 2018, providing a solution for takeaway cups.

Detpak General Manager of Marketing and Innovation Tom Lunn explains how RecycleMe™ innovates in two ways;

Firstly, the cup features a unique mineral based lining which means it can easily be recycled in a normal paper recycling plant,” says Tom.

“Also, we’ve established a collection system with our collection partner Shred-X, which guarantees that every cup collected gets recycled.”

While War on Waste raised public awareness, the packaging industry’s waste issue has been a discussion within businesses circles for some time and Detpak spent more than three years looking into new linings that it could use in its recyclable cups.

The advantage is it can run through standard paper pulping equipment and doesn’t require any additional investment at the recycling plant.” Tom comments.

To ensure the cups do get recycled, Shred-X collects the cups and lids from specially designed collection points. The stations allow consumers to separate the cups, lids, and liquids at the time they are disposed to minimise contamination. Shred-X then shreds and delivers the cups straight to paper mills, where they are recycled into paper products.

Talking about the partnership established with Detpak, Shred-X General Manager Van Karas says, “Detpak came to us, knowing our ability with logistics and the collection situation,” Van says. “We’re used to going into sites like where coffee is sold, so we’re able to get in there, collect the waste, and take it away without any hassle to the venue owner.”

Shred-X has a network of trucks across Australia, with more than 50,000 individual collection sites as part of their existing secure document destruction service.

The cup is not only recyclable but can be blended in with our current collections,” says Van.

In February 2019, RecycleMe™ also received endorsement from leading environmental foundation Planet Ark for its transparency and holistic thinking.

Planet Ark CEO Paul Klymenko says that Detpak has thought of every link in the chain with RecycleMe™. “It’s a genuinely transparent system that considers every element,” he says.

Paul explains in order to gain an exclusive Planet Ark endorsement, every detail must be considered.

How will the product be separated? Where will the material go? Who are the commercial partners? It’s a question of seeing who is going to do all the bits in the chain and making sure there is no stone unturned,” he says.

Paul says systems like RecycleMe are important to maintain a sustainable industry.

Think of all the effort that’s gone into making a coffee cup. Growing the tree, turning it into paper, using it once and throwing it in a hole in the ground seems ludicrous,” he says. “Capturing and keeping these resources in use for as long as possible is what creating a circular economy is about.”

Detpak are pleased to be partnering with AWRE this year to offer a genuine recycling solution for takeaway cups used at the expo. All hot drinks purchased at AWRE 2019 will be served in RecycleMe™ cups with dedicated Collection Stations located around the event to capture cups for recycling.

Find out more about RecycleMe™ here including how you can order cups or set up your organisation with collection.

To see the Detpak RecycleMe™ stations in action register free for AWRE 2019 

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