Nestlé and Jacobs Douwe Egberts UK (JDE UK, part of the JDE Peet’s Group), the two biggest players in the UK coffee industry, covering brands including Nespresso, Nescafé Dolce Gusto and Tassimo, have joined forces to create Podback: a first of its kind recycling programme for coffee pods.
Podback, a not-for-profit organisation, is the UK’s first cross-industry collaboration of its kind within the coffee sector, providing several easy ways for UK consumers to recycle their coffee pods.
Launching in early 2021 the scheme will initially cover brands including Nespresso, Nescafé Dolce Gusto and Tassimo – representing the majority of the UK market - the ambition is to expand the programme to include all coffee brands that use plastic or aluminium pods in the UK.
The move comes as new research reveals confusion amongst consumers, with more than a third (35%) of coffee pod drinkers unaware that pods can be recycled, and nine in 10 (90%) stating that they’d like to be able to recycle their coffee pods through their usual household recycling.
Guillaume Chesneau, Managing Director, Nespresso UK and Ireland, Board Director of Podback, said: “As co- founders of the scheme, as well as pioneers of the minimal-waste portioned coffee system, we are excited to build on our strong existing recycling services already in place. Our ambition is to create a powerful end-to-end recycling solution, available to all, and Podback demonstrates our commitment towards achieving this important goal.”
“We are working closely with manufacturers, retailers and local authorities and calling upon them to join us and ensure the scheme has maximum impact.”
Toby Bevans, Marketing Director, JDE UK and Ireland, Board Director of Podback, said: “We are proud to be a co-founder of Podback in the UK, working to ensure that every pod enjoyed, is easily recycled.
“Together with Nestlé, we are calling on the entire industry to put commercial rivalries aside and collaborate, working together with other brands and retailers to make it as easy as possible for our consumers to recycle their pods.”
Podback will expand recycling options for coffee pods in three ways:
- Collect+: Consumers will be able to take their used coffee pods to their nearest Collect+ delivered by Yodel drop-off point. There are more than 6,500 drop-off points in local stores across the UK, open seven days a week.
- Kerbside collection: In a pioneering effort to make recycling easier for consumers, coffee pods will be collected alongside their regular household waste and recycling. This has not previously been possible within the UK’s waste infrastructure. Exeter City Council, Cheltenham Borough Council and South Derbyshire District Council are in advanced discussions with Podback to become the first confirmed partners, meaning that from launch, over 330,000 residents living in these areas will be able to have their pods collected alongside their household waste and recycling. Podback is in live discussions with several other local authorities to have collections operational at launch, with ambitious plans to expand across the UK.
- Retailer ‘handover at home’: Podback is in ongoing discussions with retailers to facilitate a ‘handover at home’ option, meaning that consumers can have their used coffee pods collected for recycling when they have their groceries delivered. While this is unlikely to be ready for launch, Podback partners are working hard to make this a reality as soon as possible.