Good Human Club

Let’s get this thing right!

Packaging Insights

Biffa slashes single-use paper waste with UK cup recycling scheme

#Biffa slashes single-use paper waste with UK cup recycling scheme

29 Jan 2024 — Biffa is launching a countrywide recycling service for hot and cold takeaway drinks cups. From October 2025, all businesses with ten or more full-time staff that sell takeaway drinks in fiber-based single-use cups will have to recycle them by law.

Over 62 million single-use tea, coffee and cold drinks cups are reportedly discarded in the UK weekly. Although many contain cardboard that can be recycled into new products and packaging, millions still end up in general waste, warns the organization.

Daniel Barrett of Biffa’s Reactive Services says that “far too many” recyclable takeaway cups end up in general waste, preventing perfectly good cardboard from being transformed into new products.

“But despite the eagerness of many businesses to become more sustainable and compliant, the UK lacked sufficient options for the convenient and efficient nationwide recycling of these cups.”

“Now, alongside our disposable vape recycling service and our leading position on surplus redistribution, our takeaway cup scheme shows how we’re actively reducing waste by helping people and businesses re-use, recycle and redistribute as much of it as possible so we can all leave a smaller footprint.”

Paper cup laying in nature. Biffa now offers UK mainland businesses an integrated disposal, collection and recycling solution for paper cups.Preserving resources
Biffa now offers UK mainland businesses — from cafés and restaurants to service stations and supermarkets — a fully integrated disposal, collection and recycling solution for used paper cups.

The organization provides practical and technical help to businesses, including compliance advice to cup disposal points, bags and bins. The cups are then collected, bulked and baled by Biffa before being transported to a UK paper mill to be transformed into new cardboard packaging.

Alongside reuse and surplus redistribution, recycling generally produces fewer carbon emissions than disposal and using virgin material to make new goods from scratch, according to Biffa. This supports the fight against climate change and ensures the preservation of valuable natural resources, stresses the organization.

Paul Sanderson, chief executive of The Recycling Association, says: “Many takeaway cups contain high-quality cardboard that can be recycled into new cardboard or paper products. Collection schemes like this ensure that these cups can be kept from general waste so that they can be recycled at specialist mills.”

“At The Recycling Association, we welcome anything that helps to increase recycling of products while also ensuring we maintain high-quality recycling of easier-to-recycle packaging.”

Edited by Natalie Schwertheim

To contact our editorial team please email us at

If you found this article valuable, you may wish to receive our newsletters.
Subscribe now to receive the latest news directly into your inbox.

# Good Human Club


Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *