An independent coffee retailer is offering discounted drinks to customers for life if they do their bit for the environment.
Coffee Am Byth, which runs a stall at the Cardiff markets on Riverside and Roath every weekend, will knock money off the price of drinks if customers buy their resuable cup and return to the retailer with it.
Called KeepCups, the cups, made from materials such as glass and ceramics, are intended to reduce the waste produced by disposable takeaway containers given out by most coffee shops.
The company will sell the cups from August 13 on RCMA (Riverside Community Market Association) days, and will then give either 10% or 20p off drinks when customers come back with the cup.
They will cost between £9 and £15 each, and the ecological move by Coffee Am Byth is following the example of Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall.
The TV chef is waging a war on waste across the country, which has seen him drive around London in a battle bus covered in coffee cups for a BBC show.
He’s targeting coffee shop giants Starbucks, Costa and Caffe Nero for a recycling scandal, and found people in the UK throw away 2.5 billion of the cardboard cups every year, and 99% of them are sent to a landfill, which is having a big impact on the environment.
Jamie Neasom, owner of Coffee Am Byth, said while he was not directly inspired by the TV personality, the timing of the show being aired has worked well.
“It sort of happened in parallel with the TV campaign – I was thinking about starting to do this anyway, before I heard about Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall’s plan.
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“But I always try to be ethical and ecological.
“I see coffee and hot drinks as an opportunity to do good things in the community.”
Jamie, 29, said the issue of coffee cups not being reusable is a “major problem” when it comes to sustainability.
He added: “You have to put the coffee in something, and it’s hard to find cups that are not expensive and are actually recyclable.
“There are lots of claims made by cup manufacturers about dispensable cups, but the properties in the cup still can’t be broken down.
“At the moment, with disposable cups, the only real way to reduce the harm being done to the environment is to sell less coffee. The challenge is to give a cup to people they will want to use again and bring back.
“The cups are a lovely product in themselves, and I hope people will purchase them.”
He said so far, feedback had been good from customers, and many had shown interest in buying them.
Jamie, from Pontcanna, added: “Coffee is the small pleasure that people indulge in every day, and plastic cups are not very nice to drink out of anyway.
“With a bit of a push, this could reach more people and be a real success.”