Monday, November 6, 2017 - 13:30

The Eden Project, one of the UK’s most popular visitor attractions and an icon of sustainability, has committed to recycle its disposable beverage cups by joining the Simply Cups collection and recycling scheme.

In a perfect demonstration of a closed-loop system, it will then be selling a range of products from its gift shop, manufactured from its own recycled cups.

Peter Goodwin, Co-Founder of Simply Cups, said: “Working with Simply Cups, the Eden Project will not only have the reassurance that all of its single-use cups will be recycled and transformed into new products, it will also be able to sell back these products to its visitors, making it the first attraction in the UK to offer a closed-loop system for beverage cups.”

Eden’s Chief Executive Gordon Seabright said: “This is an important milestone for us in terms of our sustainability. One of our key objectives is to foster a closed-loop economy.  We hope that being able to demonstrate this with the help of Simply Cups will encourage other liked-minded organisations in our community as well as visitor attractions in other parts of the UK.”

As one of the UK’s most popular destinations, attracting more than one million visitors a year, the Eden Project sells a vast amount of hot and cold drinks, the majority of which are served in crockery which is washed and re-used.

In addition, Eden offers visitors who bring their own cup a discount on their drink and also offers a re-usable bamboo cup for sale.

For visitors who prefer their drink on the go, Eden has changed from compostable cups to offer the new Simply Cups recyclable cup. Eden will put in dedicated cup collection bins located at various points around the site, with clear communications to visitors informing them where they can deposit their cups after use.

Simply Cups will then bulk collect Eden’s used cups before reprocessing into its unique NextCupCycle™polymer. Cornish product designers and manufacturers, ashortwalk, then mould the resin into a range of functional products, thereby displacing virgin plastic.

A range of these products, including a reusable cup, stationery and gift items such as pens and rulers, will also then be stocked in the Eden Project Shop for sale back to its visitors. 

Simply Cups will also be holding its fourth Annual Members Event at Eden on November 7. With a membership of more than 100 companies, spanning the whole supply chain and including major blue-chips including Nestlé, Mars Drinks, E.ON and Lloyds, the scheme will be using Eden as an example to other companies to show how they can also implement a closed-loop system for their used cups.