Starbucks pledges $10M to support development of recyclable, compostable coffee cups

Starbucks pledges $10M to support development of recyclable, compostable coffee cups

Starbucks said Tuesday it is pledging $10 million toward a new initiative to develop a recyclable coffee cup within three years.

Starbucks is teaming up with Closed Loop Partners‘ Center for the Circular Economy to create the NextGen Cup Challenge. The challenge will award grants to entrepreneurs working on ideas that could lead to the development of more sustainable cups.

Starbucks said the challenge represents a the first step toward keeping cups out of landfills and making them recyclable or compostable. Whatever solutions come out of the challenge will be open source, to encourage other coffee companies to join in.

“No one is satisfied with the incremental industry progress made to date, it’s just not moving fast enough,” Colleen Chapman, vice president of Starbucks global social impact overseeing sustainability, said in a statement. “So today, we are declaring a moon shot for sustainability to work together as an industry to bring a fully recyclable and compostable cup to the market, with a three-year ambition.”

Starbucks cups have a plastic coating on the inside, which allows them to hold up under the heat from coffee, but that makes them unable to be recycled in some areas. Starbucks cups are recyclable in several large markets, including Seattle, New York, Boston, San Francisco and Washington D.C. Starbucks is calling on cities to develop consistent recycling and compost policies to ensure that cups can be more widely recycled.

Starbucks said it is in the middle of a six-month trial of a new cup liner made partially from plant-based materials for its paper cups. Starbucks said this is the 13th internal test of this type in just the last year.

The new initiative answers the calls of frequent protesters who have called on Starbucks to develop more sustainable cups. Those groups have shown up at a variety of events, including the 2017 GeekWire Summit where Starbucks CEO Kevin Johnson spoke, and could make an appearance at the company’s shareholder meeting tomorrow.

The groups applauded the recyclable, compostable cup challenge but expressed skepticism, noting that Starbucks has fallen short on past sustainability goals.

“Starbucks today agreed to solve its 4 billion disposable cups per year problem, putting it on the right side of history for forests and climate — we think,” said Todd Paglia, executive director of, a group based in Bellingham, Wash. “This is the third such commitment Starbucks has made — and if they follow through, it will change the impact of its cups and the worldwide cup market. Because this is their third commitment, needs more details from Starbucks about its pledge.”

Source: Geek Wire

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Dilek Bil spent 33 years in both corporate and entrepreneurial ventures.

Worked 10 years in banking for American Express Bank, BNP-Ak-Dresdner Bank and Société Générale. Her years in financial industry were mostly concentrated on introducing new and innovative financial instruments to help grow volume of trade finance, especially for food and  agricultural products to catalyze  a shared value economy.

Co-founded Kangaroo İletişim in 1994, a brand strategy and advertising agency, worked with international brands such as Volvo, VW and Garanti. End of 2011, spun-off advertising and re-structured her business as  a sustainability consultancy and communications agency. She currently advises companies in creating, defining, building, measuring more purposeful businesses, strategies, brands and compelling communications.

Dilek Bil also serves on the Board of Akmerkez Gayrimenkul Yatirim Ortakligi AS., where she leads the ‘Risk’ and ‘Corporate Governance’ committees.

Dilek Bil created and anchored a weekly TV show on Cnbc-e, named  “Sürsün Bu Dünya”. She interviewed more than 40 opinion leaders  -corporate CEO’s, policy makers, academicians, NGO presidents-  to encourage and show them a new direction of  a sustainable economic model with market opportunities and profitabilty.

Dilek Bil is among inspirational leaders in women empowerment and sustainability, in pursing her task, she also presents at conferences  as well as to students.

Dilek Bil has been actively working in civil society:

Recipient of the “2017 Women of the Decade in Media and Social Change” award by the Women Economic Forum.

Honorary board member and former president of KAGIDER (Women Entrepreneurs Association of Turkey).

Founding member and the Vice-President of FODER (Financial Literacy and Inclusion Association of Turkey).

Member of the board of trustees WWF-Turkey.

Member of the Strategic Advisory Group for International Council on Women’s Business Leadership.

Former board member of Turkish-British Business Council of DEIK.

Works closely with many civil society organizations: UNSDSN
German Bioeconomy Council, ALL Ladies League

Dilek Bil is an amateur in gastronomy and oenology.

Board member of Accademia Italiana della Cucina.

Founding member of 28-year-old Wine Association of Turkey,

Dilek Bil graduated from Northport High School-New York and has a BA degree from University of North Texas U.S.A., married and has a son.