Lidless disposable cup launched to help tackle ‘eco disaster’

A product described as Britain’s first fully plastic-free and recyclable lidless takeaway cup has been unveiled.

The ButterflyCup is initially being introduced at WWT (Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust) centres across the UK. It comes after TV chef Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall challenged the major coffee chains to switch to a ‘properly recyclable’ cup to solve the issue of disposable coffee cups being thrown away.

Many cups currently are not recycled due to their plastic lining. They also require the container and lid to be thrown away separately, often causing users to dispose of them incorrectly.

The ButterflyCup contains no plastic laminate and, due to its all-in-one design, eliminates the need for a plastic lid. The inks are also plant-based.

The product can be recycled in a regular paper bin along with cardboard and ordinary paper and can be composted at home or in a food waste bin. It also biodegrades naturally.

ButterflyCup has held talks with several major coffee chains and is currently used in more than 20 countries across five continents.

The cup has a patented folding design which closes the top of the cup and prevents leaks, while allowing the consumer to drink from its inbuilt drinking spout.

Tommy McLoughlin, founder and CEO of ButterflyCup, said, “We are thrilled to be launching in the UK with WWT, an organisation whose ethos of protecting the natural world we share. It is a travesty that of the billions of coffee cups the UK uses each year, so few get recycled. We created ButterflyCup to lift the lid on this eco disaster and help solve it. We believe it is the world’s most environmentally friendly disposable cup, and we hope more coffee outlets across the UK give their customers the option of using it in the near future.”

Lucy Smith, head of sustainability at WWT, said, “We are delighted to be using ButterflyCup across all our wetland sites. We have had brilliant feedback from staff and visitors when we trialled it at one of our centres. We offer a discount for refilling reusable cups but where this is not possible, a fully recyclable and compostable cup provides a great option. ButtlerflyCup’s could even be reused for seed planting and then put straight in the soil where they will fully break down.”