Paper cup organisations partner with ACE UK to drive paper cup recycling 


Organisations from the paper cup supply chain have signed an agreement with Alliance for Beverage Cartons and the Environment (ACE UK) to drive UK recycling of PElined paper cups. 

The 14 organisations that have signed the agreement will work towards providing a long-term, nationwide paper cup recycling solution that will build on the recycling activities gained so far in this industry.  


Companies included in this partnership include: Benders Paper Cups, Bunzl Catering Supplies, Caffe Nero, Costa Coffee, Dart Products Europe, Greggs, Huhtamaki, International Paper, McDonald’s UK, Nestlé, Pret A Manger, Seda Group, Starbucks, and Stora Enso. 

With ACE UK’s recycling expertise, the 14 companies will finance an activity programme which will give more people access to recycling for paper cups. 

The programme entails 3 factors:   

  • From 1st January 2018 all ACE UK bring banks will accept paper cups for recycling, providing an additional 382 recycling points placed in 97 local authorities across the UK. A further 33 recycling points across eight local authorities are scheduled during the next phase. 

  •  The cups from these recycling points will be processed at ACE UK’s recycling facility in Halifax. 

  • ACE UK will work to include cups in local authority kerbside collections. At the moment, 66% of local authorities collect beverage cartons at kerbside, in addition to those collected through bring banks. They hope to achieve similar levels of coverage for cups. 

ACE UK has been successfully running the beverage carton industry’s recycling programme for the last ten years, driving significant increases in carton recycling as part of its role as the UK beverage carton trade body. 

During this period, it has worked closely with local authorities and waste management companies and today, 92% of local authorities collect beverage cartons for recycling through either bring banks or kerbside collection. 

ACE UK chief executive Richard Hands said: “The paper cup industry is facing very similar recycling challenges to the ones the beverage carton industry faced when we started our programme ten years ago. While our primary focus will remain on increasing beverage carton recycling, we believe our expertise, experience and existing relationships can help the paper cup industry create a step change in cup recycling. While it is early days, we have a clear measured plan agreed and expect to see significant progress in cup recycling over the next two years and beyond.”