Cawleys, the region’s largest independent recycling and waste management company, is providing new and innovative solutions to traditionally hard-to-recycle waste.
Startling data shows the UK generates around 9.5 million tonnes of food waste in a single year – the highest figures in Europe.
On a local level, recent research from Cawleys revealed that 97% of businesses in Bedfordshire, Hertfordshire, Buckinghamshire and Northamptonshire think it is important to recycle, however only 18% believe they are recycling food and coffee waste effectively.
Strategy and Communications Director, Anna Cawley said:
“It is crucial businesses adapt to a more sustainable means of waste disposal now more than ever, so that they can maximise their recycling rates and focus on a more environmentally friendly future.
“Whilst it is difficult to completely eliminate food waste, caterers, retailers and manufacturers can play a significant part in reducing their impact. As responsible recycling and waste management specialists, we are determined to help educate businesses on how they can make a difference.”
A new approach to coffee waste – reducing costs and carbon footprint
People in the UK consume around 98 million cups of coffee each day, which produces around 250,000 tonnes of used coffee grounds each year. Despite this, many people do not know that cups and grounds can be recycled.
Cawleys offer a unique and innovative solution to this issue by providing a service that allows businesses to recycle both coffee grounds and disposable cups, helping organisations to reduce their carbon footprint and save money in the process.
Among its clients, Cawleys is proud to work as London Luton Airport’s waste management partner on a number of recycling services, including a hot drinks cup recycling scheme and coffee grounds recycling initiative.
There have been ground-breaking achievements since the partnership began in 2021, with over 39 tonnes of coffee grounds (the equivalent of around 785,000 single shots of coffee) and almost 400,000 disposable cups being recycled.
As disposable coffee cups are lined with plastic, they cannot be recycled in a conventional way. Instead, they need to be transported to one of only three specialist facilities in the UK, meaning that fewer than 1% of coffee cups are ever recycled.
“At Cawleys we encourage businesses to recycle as many disposable coffee cups as possible, but to do this the cups need to be segregated at the point of disposal. Our Infinity Scheme allows waste to be separated into containers, keeping it cleaner and dryer, and making it easier to recycle. Staff can dispose of any dregs and store the used coffee cups in one central unit. We then collect the coffee cups and work with specialist coffee cup recyclers who recycle the durable fibres from the cups to create industrial
“This process not only benefits the environment, it provides commercial benefits to organisations too, saving them money on waste collection and reducing the risk of contaminating other recyclable materials.”
Around a quarter of a million tonnes of wet, spent coffee grounds are produced in the UK each year. When disposed in landfill, these grounds breakdown to produce greenhouse gas emissions such as methane – a gas that is 25 times more potent than carbon dioxide. Working in partnership with bio-bean, the largest recycler of coffee grounds, Cawleys offer a unique solution to this issue.
“Another element of Cawley’s Infinity Scheme is that coffee grounds can be segregated from general waste at the point of disposal, using coffee caddies to store coffee grounds for collection. Once collected, Cawleys deliver the grounds to bio-bean, who transform them into a range of products such as natural flavouring extracts, coffee pellets for use in industrial biomass boilers, and coffee logs for home wood burners. Just like the coffee cups, this process directly reduces waste management costs and reduces the risk of contaminating dry mixed recycling too.”
For more information on Cawleys’ Infinity Scheme, food waste recycling or any other form of recycling or waste disposal, visit www.cawleys.co.uk or call 0845 260 2000
For more information on bio-bean visit www.bio-bean.com