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Recycling Bins in British Columbia

Starbucks recycling bins in British Columbia

If you’ve visited one of our company-owned stores in British Columbia lately, hopefully you’ve seen our new front of store recycling containers!

We were able to place containers in almost all stores, although unfortunately there were a few in towns that still don’t have recycling service for businesses. Also, some of our landlords do not provide recycling service to their buildings, so stores in those locations can’t recycle. Starbucks is the first restaurant to accept disposable coffee cups for recycling in B.C., and it’s a big step towards meeting our goal to have recycling bins in all our stores by 2015.

In addition, we’ve set a goal to have at least 25% of our beverages served in reusable or ceramic cups by 2015, and to ensure that the rest of the cups are recyclable. That way, we can significantly reduce our impact by diverting cups from the landfill. We serve about 4 billion cups globally per year; but the disposable cup industry as a whole sells more than 500 billion cups in the same period. As one of the many operators in the restaurant business, Starbucks is working to lead the way to move the entire industry towards cup recycling.

So look for the big, blue, customized recycling bins in our B.C. company-operated stores. The bins have simple signage telling you which recyclables go where. Our hot cups, lids and cup sleeves can all be recycled, as can our iced plastic cups and lids. Recycling is a complicated business, and what can be recycled varies from city to city. In order for something like a cup to be recycled, it has to have a market value. Our bins will help separate the recyclables so that they have the most value and are attractive to recyclers. Starbucks worked closely with its recycling haulers to ensure that the cups are fed into the recycling stream and not sent to landfill.

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