Plastic recycling: Why are 99.75% of coffee cups not recycled?

It's gradually becoming common knowledge that it's not as easy to recycle your takeaway coffee cup as people may have thought.

It's the mixture of paper and plastic in their inner lining - designed to make them both heat and leakproof - that causes difficulties.

There are currently only a small number of specialist plants in the UK able to process the disposable used cups, and as a result, the vast majority of them (more than 99.75%) don't get recycled.

In 2011 it was estimated that 2.5 billion coffee cups were thrown away each year and that figure is likely to be higher now.

Some of the biggest sellers of coffee in the UK, including Costa and Starbucks, say they have started recycling coffee cups, but that's only if customers dispose of their takeaway cups in store....

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vincent meyer