UK-based retailer Marks & Spencer (M&S) has announced the introduction of fully recyclable paper fibre takeaway cups across all its UK cafés starting in April 2024.  

The retailer introduced the paper fibre coffee cup in October 2023, thereby claiming to become the first high street coffee retailer to offer a cup that is completely recyclable in both household and on-the-go recycling systems. 

The rollout, which began with a trial in 20 stores, will now expand to more than 300 M&S locations, including its cafés, vended coffee points, and branded Marketplaces within its Foodhalls.  

The move aligns with the retailer’s commitment to reducing plastic packaging.  

Last year, the retailer said it achieved its ‘Plan A’ target to eliminate 75 million units of plastic by 2023-24. 

The full rollout of the aforementioned paper fibre takeaway coffee cups is set to further remove 20 million units of plastic packaging annually from its food business. 

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Earlier this year, M&S introduced recyclable paper packaging for its sandwiches and toasties within its cafés, a move that will result in the removal of an estimated 4.5 million units of plastic.  

In addition, the retailer offers a 50p (¢64) discount to customers who use their own reusable cups, thereby promoting the most sustainable option.  

M&S Food hospitality director Alicia Thompson said: “Our goal is to offer customers the most sustainable cup of coffee on the high street. A takeaway coffee they can feel good about drinking because it comes in fully recyclable cups, uses delicious 100% Fairtrade [Foundation] coffee beans and is made with RSPCA [Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals] Assured fresh milk.  

“Our customers care strongly about reducing plastic and they’ve supported our move to paper fibre cups. With no impact to the taste or temperature of their hot drink – and now 100% recyclable – this is one of the ways we’re supporting our customers to make small changes in their everyday lives, which have a big impact on the environment.” 

In January this year, M&S announced the expansion of its ‘Refilled’ scheme to 19 additional stores across the UK, in partnership with Reposit.