Six months after its launch, the Kiama-based initiative to make it easier to say no to disposable coffee cups has become free to use.
The basic premise of the Green Caffeen system remains the same – people download the app onto their phones, scan it at a participating café and are given their coffee in a Green Caffeen cup. The cup is not theirs to keep. Instead they bring it back to any participating cafe, the return is scanned into the system and washed by the café, and the customer can use another of the distinctive green cups.
While thousands have downloaded their app, the resistance to paying a subscription fee for it sent its founders Damien Clarke and Martin Brooks back to the drawing board.
“We really want to make an impact on landfill, and we think Green Caffeen 2.0 is the way to do it in a shorter timeframe,” says Damien.
The app now has no subscription fee, just a fine for not returning the cup to a participating outlet within 30 days.
“We think of it as like a library fine – the whole idea is to keep the cups circulating not piling up at home.”
The duo are looking to duplicate the deals they have already done with Kiama, Wollongong and Port Macquaire councils to supply branded keep cups for their region. These are then supplied to the participating cafes.
“Councils are very keen to get involved, as they want to reduce the massive problem disposable cups cause.
“Our system is all about making it easier for users.”
Another way the Green Caffeen message is going to be spread is through roasters supplying branded cups to the cafes they service.
“The first of these is going to be Danes Coffee Roasters, winner of the Champion Australian Roaster title two years in a row.
“They are really excited about being able to provide this environmentally friendly solution for their customers.”
With 85 per cent of cafes in the Kiama LGA participating in the Green Caffeen scheme, it’s time to get on board with the initiative.