Customers at Grindsmith's Greengate pod must bring their own cup or sit in, in an effort to cut plastic waste

City centre coffee shop Grindsmith are to ban the use of takeaway coffee cups, in an effort to reduce plastic waste.

Challenging Manchester residents to become more eco-conscious, the coffee shop will be trialling the scheme at their Greengate Pod from Monday 16 April. 

Customers will need to bring along a reusable cup or sit in to enjoy their beverage. Those who bring their own vessel will receive a 25p discount on drinks.

An estimated 2.5 billion takeaway cups are thrown away each year

Grindsmith co-founder Luke Tomlinson said: “Coffee cups are one of a number of single-use plastics that are causing huge damage to the environment, with an estimated 2.5 billion cups being thrown away each year.

“As a business we are always trying to innovate, challenge the perceptions of the coffee industry and become more ethical in our operations - our first small step was to start eliminating plastic straws from all stores and it is being received positively by customers. 

“We hope that the removal of cups from the Pod will spur Mancunians to become more conscious in their plastic habits and that more shops will follow suit.”

2018 04 06 Grindsmith Pod
Grindsmith will trial the elimination of single-use plastic cups at their pod on Greengate square

Co-founder Pete Gibson added: “We don’t mind if you use one of our own reusable cups, a mug from the office or the lid from a flask - we’ll put coffee into almost any vessel as long as it’s not single-use.”  

The elimination of takeaway cups will run for an initial trial period of three months in the Pod on Greengate and, should the reception be positive, the initiative will be rolled out to the other Grindsmith stores on Deansgate and in MediaCity.

Grindsmith is also working with Mayor Andy Burnham, who announced plans for Manchester to ditch all single-use plastic by 2020 at the inaugural Green Summit.

The move follows the banning of plastic straws by several Manchester venues, including Carluccio’s, Hawksmoor, San Carlo and Lily’s Bar - which is also supporting the Marine Conservation Society (Lily's is home to a fourteen-tonne aquarium). 

2018 04 06 Grindsmith Eco Cups
Grindsmith have introduced reusable cups by eCoffee Cup; made from bamboo, they’re biodegradable

Elsewhere in the fight to reduce waste, Confidential enjoyed a superb six-course meal by Masterchef chef Matt Campbell earlier this week, made entirely from food that would have otherwise been wasted. 

The meal came courtesy of the Real Junk Food Project, an innovative network of cafes that intercept food destined for landfill, and serve it up on a pay-as-you-feel basis.

In its first six months, Manchester’s Oxford Street branch (launched September last year) saved almost twenty tonnes of waste food - 12,690 meals - in its first six months (#feedingbelliesnotbins), and continues to gain popularity with a range of events, from fine dining evenings with visiting chefs to pop-ups at the likes of A Rubbish Night at the Museum

2017 09 21 Real Junk Food Project 5
The Real Junk Food Project on Oxford Street