‘Latte levy’ on single-use cups would be counterproductive, retailers say. Majority believe trying to be as sustainable as possible will cost their business money, survey finds.
The Government has proposed a 20-cent levy on single-use coffee cups, a move criticised by most outlets as uneconomical. Photograph: Dara Mac Donaill. Six out of 10 retailers believe trying to be as sustainable as possible will cost their business money, while the proposed “latte levy” on single-use coffee cups will be counterproductive, according to Retail Excellence Ireland.
The group, which is the largest representative body for the retail industry in Ireland, warned that the proposed 20 cent levy “does not make sense”. “It is good to see the Government place a real emphasis on sustainable measures, but the coffee-cup levy does not make sense,” said managing director Duncan Graham. “It wants consumers to use reusable coffee cups, but these are generally made from plastic which is clearly harmful to the environment. Single-use cups, meanwhile, are compostable and will degrade naturally. “The cost of living is soaring, and retailers and consumers cannot afford a further levy on goods. A transition to using multiple-use items such as cups and bowls will require restaurants and shops to install new washing and drying systems.
“Danish consultancy group Ramboll have concluded that switching to hard plastic ‘keep cups’ would result in the use of 3.6 times more water and 2.8 times more carbon compared to usage for compostable paper cups.”