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Gloucestershire Business News

Coffee pod recycling success for Cheltenham

In April 2021, Cheltenham Borough Council launched the pioneering Podback coffee pod kerbside recycling service to residents. The service has proved a great success with half a million pods estimated to have been collected so far.

Podback is a not-for-profit coffee pod recycling service that encourages people to recycle their coffee pods at home. Residents simply need to register and order free recycling bags which can be put out for kerbside collection every week with waste and recycling on their normal collection day.

Residents can recycle both plastic and aluminium coffee pods depending on the pods they use. A reminder leaflet will be sent to all residents from November 29 providing information and details on how to get involved.

The Podback recycling service is helping to reduce waste and build a cleaner, greener Cheltenham. Once collected from the kerbside, the coffee pods are sent for reprocessing in the UK. The coffee grounds are used to create soil improver and renewable energy. The plastic and aluminium are recycled into new products.

Councillor Iain Dobie, cabinet member for waste, recycling and street services said: "We were the first council to launch the Podback service which supports our commitment to tackle climate change. Cheltenham residents are incredibly motivated to recycle and their engagement with the service has been impressive with an estimated half a million pods collected so far. With growing concerns about the environment, it's good to know more and more people in Cheltenham are doing their bit for the planet. Thank you for supporting the Podback service."

The Podback service will help the council increase its recycling rate from 51 per cent and to its target of 55 per cent by 2025 and support its commitment to become a net zero carbon council by 2030. Recycling items uses less energy than manufacturing from raw materials saving natural resources and reducing carbon emissions generated by throwing items away in landfill and even incineration.

Rick Hindley, Podback's executive director said: "We want people to enjoy the quality and taste of coffee pods knowing there is a simple and easy way to recycle them. The Podback kerbside recycling collection service means householders can recycle at home and simply put their Podback bags out for collection with their other waste and recycling. We are delighted by Cheltenham's residents' response and engagement with the Podback service. We will be drawing on their success and sharing this with other interested Councils."

To register for the Podback service and order free recycling bags simply visit 

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