Starbucks Responds To Public Backlash And Agrees To Trial Run Recyclable Cups

It has been a busy year for Starbucks.

Along with the seeming endless array of seasonal offerings the chain has introduced this summer, the coffee giant has now agreed to up its environmental game and run a trial on new, Britain-made "green" recyclable cups in response to concerns about the company’s litter and waste output.

The Guardian reports that the recyclable cups — called Frugalpac — were invented by the entrepreneur and engineer Martin Myserscough, with the aim of reducing the environmental impact of about 2.5 billion paper coffee cups annually used in the U.K. 

The Frugalpac cups come equipped with a thin film liner which separates easily from the paper, thus allowing 100% of that paper to be recycled.

A Starbucks spokesman said to The Guardian: “We are very interested in finding out more about the Frugalpac cup and we will be testing it to see if it meets our standards for safety and quality, with a view to trialling its recyclability.”

The Frugalpac cups will also feature in a forthcoming television documentary by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall. His War on Waste documentary implores major coffee shop chains to justify their waste outputs, while seeking to inform consumers and companies about environmentally friendly disposal.

Happily, Starbucks responded to the backlash against its waste, and its U.K. establishments are slated to be the first retailers to test the Frugalpac cup in some of its branches.

Myerscough said: “Hugh’s team approached us back in January to find out more about the cup, which was still in prototype form. We think Frugalpac will make a huge contribution to the solution and we’re looking forward to working with the industry to make this happen.

He added: “We’ve spent the last two years developing our cup and we hope now that coffee chains and cup producers will see Frugalpac as an answer to this issue.”