Seattle -- Starbucks Coffee Co. and International Paper, with Mississippi River Pulp, LLC, have completed a six-week pilot project that -- for the first time -- proved Starbucks used paper cups can be recycled into new paper cups. This advancement brings Starbucks one step closer to its goal of ensuring 100% of its cups are reusable or recyclable by 2015.
“This innovation represents an important milestone in our journey,” said Jim Hanna, Starbucks’ director of environmental impact. “We still have a lot of work to do to reach our 2015 goal, but we’re now in a much stronger position to build momentum across the recycling industry.
Starbucks currently has another recycling pilot project underway in New York. The company is collecting paper cups at 86 of its Manhattan stores to determine whether they can be recycled into bath tissue and paper towels. In early 2011, Starbucks plans to launch a new recycling pilot in Chicago, aiming to transform the company’s discarded paper cups into napkins for use in its stores. Over the past year, Starbucks has introduced front-of-store cup collection in Toronto and Seattle, where its cups can be recycled, and in San Francisco, where its cups can be composted.