Cups and packaging

We're on a journey to deliver more sustainable, innovative solutions for all our packaging.

Sustainable by design

The packaging we serve our products in is really important to us. We love creating great tasting drinks for you to take away and enjoy, and we're also committed to making the cup in your hand as sustainable as possible.

As part of an ongoing effort to reduce its environmental impact, in November 2021, we changed the lining of the inside of our takeaway cups to be plant-based plastic, rather than an oil-based plastic.

The new cups have a 26% lower carbon footprint than a standard takeaway cup when recycled, which you can do at any Costa Coffee store nationwide – just hand them over to your barista or pop them in a cup recycling bin.

Check below, to see more of the progress we've made with our packaging already.

Our new coffee cup. 5 per cent renewable lining made from plants 95 per cent sustainably sourced wood fibre. Recycle your cup at any of our stores across the UK.Our red waffle wrap. Made from sustainably sourced wood fibre, it provides insulation so our coffee cups don't need a cardboard sleeve.Our cold cup. 60 per cent recycled plastic. 40 per cent more work to do. Recyle your cold cup in any mixed recycling bin. Our ready to drink cans. 75 per cent recycled aluminium. 25 per cent more to do. Recycle your can in any mixed recycling bin.
Introducing BURT
Borrow, Use, Reuse, Take back

BURT, our very own reusable cup scheme we're trialing, is our way of making reuse easier. You can now borrow a reusable cup from a participating Costa store in Glasgow** - use it, reuse it and take it back where it’ll be taken care of until you pop by again. No more forgetting cups at home! Watch our handy video to learn more and sign up.

Cup recycling

Costa Coffee take away cups at a recycling facility being audited by a recycling officerWe understand that coffee cups pose an industry-wide problem as the plastic lining in the cup means they cannot be thrown into standard mixed recycling bins. Instead, cups must be collected separately to be recycled at any four recycling facilities within the UK.

As the UK’s largest coffee shop brand, we wanted to do something to address this recycling challenge. In 2016, we became the first coffee chain to introduce recycling points in all our stores. By doing so, we encouraged customers to recycle any paper takeaway cup via one of our 2,600+ stores up and down the country. And we’re not precious about the brand of disposable cup you bring to us either. Even if it’s not a Costa Coffee branded cup, we’ll take care of it and ensure it's recycled.

Not satisfied with stopping there, just two years later we partnered with Valpak (an independent waste management service company) to launch the UK’s National Cup Recycling Scheme. Through this scheme, we pay waste collectors an incentive for every tonne of cups they collect, which helps to fund the right infrastructure and processes for cups to be recovered for recycling.

We have since recycled over 155 million cups via the scheme and have seen more places like offices, shopping centres, universities, transport hubs and local councils providing cup recycling facilities. We are also thrilled that the scheme is now supported by more of the UK’s leading coffee brands, as we know that working in collaboration is the best way to increase recycling rates.

You enjoy it.
We recycle it.

Since May 2018, we've collected and recycled 155 million paper cups from our stores.

Reusables

Costa Coffee reusable cups We're dedicated to increasing recycling, but we ultimately believe that encouraging reuse is the best way forward for a more sustainable future.

As part of an introductory offer to our Costa Club Loyalty scheme, every time you buy a barista made drink in a reusable cup before 31st March 2022, we’ll give you an extra bean.* This means after only four drinks in a reusable cup, you’ll earn one for free! Learn more about the Costa Club and sign up here.

And, to help encourage our customers to carry a cup with them, our reusable cups come in lots of different sizes and colours – whatever your style, there’s something to suit everyone.

rCup

Costa Coffee rCupWe've got a huge range of amazing reusable cups on offer in our stores, but our rCUP is a little bit different.

Created by Circular&Co, the Circular Cup (rCUP) is a reusable cup made from single-use paper cups. So far, since 2018, 5.4 million used cups have been given a new longer life as a Circular Reusable Cup. Plus, the rCUP is designed to last for 10 years’ use and after just nine uses its carbon footprint is offset – that’s quite the positive impact made over its lifetime!

What's more, the rCUP itself is 100% recyclable, meaning you can enjoy your favourite coffee whilst protecting the planet at every step.

What's next?

Find out more about what initiatives we've put into place to help reduce food and packaging waste wherever we can.

**For full BURT Reusable Cup scheme terms and conditions, and a list of participating stores, see here.