While dine-in options are back on the table in most venues around the country, and reusable cup use is on the rise again as COVID-19 restrictions ease, the reuse movement has suffered major setbacks in recent months. Major coffee chains and fast-food restaurants are refusing to accept reusable cups from customers, which is thought to be influencing the rest of the cafe and hospitality scene.
Following a signed statement by 125+ global experts confirming reusable cups and containers are safe for use during the COVID-19 pandemic, Responsible Cafes have launched a petition calling for reusable cups to be reinstated across all major coffee chains and fast-food restaurants.
The petition aims to drive groundswell from advocates who want to reduce their waste with reusable cups and containers, but can’t with the current ban.
In Australia, the precautionary measure taken up by major coffee chains was never broadly advised against or banned by state or territory health departments – who confirm there’s no proven benefit for hospitality venues switching to disposables.
“We’re seeking 10,000 signatures in 30 days to show major chains like McDonalds, Gloria Jeans and The Coffee Club the backing from scientists about the safe use of reusables alongside the growing public support in their favour, prompting them to revoke the ban,” Joanna Horsley, General Manager of Responsible Cafes, said.
“Last week 125+ scientists from around the world, including epidemiologists, virologists, biologists, chemists and doctors, issued a signed statement to confirm that reusable containers and cups can be used safely with basic hygiene measures”.
The movement is championed by author and activist Sarah Wilson, who is a passionate advocate for getting reusables back on the table as soon as possible.
Sarah said, “This Plastic Free July is a great time for us all to start building our better normal together. From a small thing like supporting cafes that accept reusable cups, big things grow.”
Sign the petition
To help get reusable cups back on the table as a widely accepted practice and drive change from a community level, take 30 seconds to sign and share the petition at https://www.change.org/Bringbackreuse and find a cafe accepting reusable cups here.
Read more: 6 Lifestyle Hacks For Going Plastic Free