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Shrewsbury Cup has successful first year

Shrewsbury Cup, the reusable deposit scheme for takeaway cups, has proved a resounding success in its first year of operation.  Despite the Covid-19 pandemic, the scheme saved 30,000 single use disposable from the incinerator in the first 10 months .

Launched in April 2019, the scheme, one of only a handful in the UK, sees hot and cold drink cups available in cafes across Shrewsbury.  Customers pay £1 deposit for a Shrewsbury Cup, enjoy their drink and then return the cup to any participating café to get their £1 back. The cups are then washed ready to be used again. 

The scheme continues to attract the interest of local businesses. New members include local cafes and restaurants, Palmers, Colonel’s Son, and The Olive Tree, bringing the number of local members to 25.  To encourage even more members to sign up and recognising the pressure on the hospitality sector, the organisers have waived the fee to join making it free to any café or restaurant.

Co-founder of the scheme, Sophie Peach said “We recognise that our local businesses have had an impossibly tough year so far, with flooding in February and the onset of lockdown in March – so in a gesture to support our cafes we suspended the monthly charge to join the Shrewsbury Cup scheme.

"So right now it’s free to join and we welcome anyone who is selling takeout drinks to get in touch if they would like to offer a zero waste option to their customers.”

In response to hygiene concerns over the pandemic, 120 scientists from around the world have come to the same conclusion - that reusable cups are perfectly safe to use as long as they are washed properly and this is the same advice given by the UK Food Standards Agency.

Sophie and Ali have been working with cafes to set up Covid safe systems in-house. When you return your cup to a café you drop it in a bucket and then get your £1 back – or you get another coffee in a fresh cup. This way, the barista knows that all cups that go near their coffee machines have been washed and sanitised to their standards and customers know that every cup is safe.

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