a group in a cafe drinking coffees from idealcups used in the cupcycling scheme. they're light blue

Today is the launch of a cup recycling scheme in Titirangi. Action group Love Titirangi is recognising the International Day of Climate Action with a CupCycling scheme that aims to reduce plastic waste in the suburb by removing disposable takeaway cups from five local cafés.

Globally, a million disposable coffee cups go to the landfill every minute. Someone consuming five coffees a week can produce around 14kgs of waste a year. The little West Auckland suburb of Titirangi is doing its best to change this. The cafés involved will be offering reusable cups to customers, which can be returned to any participating café and refilled.

CupCycling was first launched in Motueka, and in its first year the scheme prevented over 14,000 disposable cups from heading to the landfill. Other areas using CupCycling include Cromwell, Upper Hutt, Richmond, Golden Bay, Wellington, and even Prince George in BC, Canada.

Since last year, more than 6,500 fabric bags have been provided for Titirangi locals to use free of charge, with local sewers making more. Children and business owners in the area are passionate about reducing waste, creating pictures and poems about the issue while MP Deborah Russell tables a petition in Parliament.

Love Titirangi spokesperson Michele Powles stated the locals and retailers were quick to pick up the boomerang bag scheme, and the new CupCycling one was likely to go down well. “It’s a chance for our local community to make another big change with the small action of refusing disposable coffee cups,” said Powles. “Reuse, return, repeat – it’s an easy mantra to remember for shopping bags and coffee cups alike.”