Max from GoodFood's perspective on the australian plastic initiative

Max Veenhuyzen from goodfood has written an excellent article outlining the forward thinking approach that some of Australia's leading Cafe's, Bars, Restaurants and Kitchens are taking towards reducing their environmental impact. 

The article takes a look behind the scenes at a couple of business' from each industry and provides a wonderful insight as to the efforts some people are going to. There is a real teach not preach feel to his writing and at no point does Max doesn't stand on his soap box. We are sure many of the messages you will find in his writing will resonate with you.

The team at Responsible Cafes love this article for two reasons. 

For the Customer

Photo by John Schnobrich on Unsplash

Support Environmentally Conscious Local Business


"Why don't they just get rid of straws/bags/cups"

If you are in doubt about how easy it for business owners to make changes we would strongly recommend you reading this article. To see the lengths that some business owners are willing to go to in order to reduce their own environmental impact is inspiring. A personal favourite is the cafe that asks the farmer to deliver the milk in pales rather than plastic crates and cartons. 

It is still early days, as we slowly change our habits and purchasing decisions to spend in a more conscious manner. Many of the solutions aren't the most convenient, as a result implementing them requires some creative business management and persistence.  

Go out there and support your local business owners who are willing to put ethics and the environment first. It is a bold move, and your commitment to their business will reinforce the message that they are doing the right thing. 

For the Business Owner

Photo by Icons8 team on Unsplash

The tide is turning, customers are now willing to pay a little extra for products with purpose.

They want to make sure their money is with business' that are helping the environment and, depending on where they go, they may even be saving some money at the same time (if they visit a Responsible Cafe).

The trend is set to continue as purchasing power will move towards business' that align with the internationally growing concern for the environment. 

If you start working to reduce your environmental impact, you can be sure that people will notice your efforts and respond accordingly. For more help with this please get in touch with us.

A link to the full article can be found here. A big thank you to Max Veenhuyzen for including us in the peice. 


Find out how the City of Brisbane is using 8000 less disposable cups per day


First of all a round of applause for the City of Brisbane please! 

The City of Brisbane is putting its greenest foot forward and leading the charge against disposable coffee cups, having recored the greatest number of cafes registered with Responsible Cafes.

Responsible Cafes now has over 4000 business' registered with us, over 70% of which are offering you 50c off you coffee. Here is how it works:

- Find your local here

- Take your reusable cup or think about drinking in

- Save the world and a heap of money! 

Photo by Fabian Blank on Unsplash

Big Savings

Taking a reusable cup with you when you buy your daily brew from your favourite watering hole, and you're saving $145 a year. 

Photo by Fabian Blank on Unsplash

226 Responsible Cafes are located within the City of Brisbane. Recent figures found that our organisation is taking an average of 35.2 disposable cups out of circulation, per business, per day. 

Now if my maths serve me correctly, that means the City of Brisbane is preventing 7995.2 cups from entering landfill or the Ocean each day! 

We think thats an amazing statisitics, and truly shows that the solution to our plasticaddiction is in our hands...

Choose to Reuse


If you are a business owner and this has inspired you to become a Responsible Cafe, we would love to hear from you.


Takeaway coffee is the epitome of cool - it shouldn't be

It’s not just the straws or plastic bags. One of the worst offenders when it comes to plastic is the single use, disposable coffee cup due to its plastic lining.

The humble coffee cup has become one of the defining objects of modern Australia: It tells people, "I'm busy and don’t have time to stop" and is carried like a badge of honour.

Despite the campaign by, which enlists cafes to give people a discount for bringing their own cup, the keep-cup revolution still has a way to go. I still see disposable coffee cups everywhere - on billboards, in advertising, on TV and spilling out of rubbish bins and discarded on the street.

It shocks most people when I tell them they can’t be recycled. Most have a plastic waterproof lining that’ll outlive us. These coffee cups are the second biggest source of landfill in Australia - more than a billion a year.

If people were more aware, I’m sure they’d think twice and bring their own cup.

Two years ago, I floated an idea at TEDx Sydney Fast Ideas: clear warnings on all disposable coffee cups, informing Australians that they cannot be recycled.

These warnings could work just like those on cigarette packets. They can inform of the damage and danger. They can transform an object once perceived as "cool" into something people are slightly embarrassed about carrying. And such a warning should be a mandatory condition of sale.

Australians seem to like the idea - 30,000 of them have supported a petition on calling for a warning on cups.

I’ll now give those 30,000 people actions. I’m going to start by targeting the corporate chains who sell coffee. McDonald’s, Starbucks, Gloria Jeans, Hudsons Coffee, Seven Eleven: prepare to be contacted by thousands of Australians who want to see this as part of your corporate social responsibility policy.

Then I’m going to direct my army of supporters to the coffee chains. Vittoria, Di Bella, Toby’s Estate - you’re part of the problem, and I want you to be part of the solution, with coffee cup warnings.

I even plan to take this all the way up to Environment Minister Josh Frydenberg. It’s surely an easy win for him to get behind.

I’m just an everyday Sydney woman on a mission. We need to use people power on government and corporations. I’m doing my bit and you can too.

That way, our morning flat whites will start tasting that much sweeter.

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Anna Warren works for local government and is a campaigner.

Keep cups + keeping caffeinated: The movement to give coffee-drinkers incentives to go green

Coffee drinkers who bring keep cups or mugs will get a discount of 50 cents at The Coffee Club and Starbucks, as the war on plastic heats up.


Responsible Cafes general manager Jo Horsley said using a keep cup makes consumers feel better about their purchasing decisions.

The group, which encourages cafes to offer discounts to cafe go-ers, has had 4000 cafes sign up to to give customers incentives for customers to bring in their own cup.

“There’s a plastic lining inside the cardboard cup and what that means is when it goes to a recycling facility, it gets very confused, they don’t know what to do with it, it usually ends up in landfill,” she said.

“The (cafes that have signed up) save an average of about 35 cups from landfill per day by cafes.”

Port Mac joins in on the act

Cafes in Port Macquarie having been upping the ante in the crackdown on single use coffee cups. As about 20 businesses in Port Macquarie, Wauchope and the Camden Haven have signed up to the Responsbile Cafes program. 

FOUR Espresso cafe owner Emma Maslen said they decided they could do their part in making a change on wastage.

“It might be a small change but in the long run it will make a huge difference if everyone jumps on board and participates in bringing their own cup,” she said.

“Whether it be a keep cup, or a simple coffee mug from the office, it makes a difference to our environment and future generations.”

Find out where your local Responsible Cafe is here

Full Article


How to keep your Barista happy

We all know that coffee made with love poured into a reusable cup tastes better.

Keeping your Barista happy will increase your chances of getting that brew tasting like liquid gold.

How to do this?

Well, you don't have to remember their birthday (although that would probably work as well) 

Just follow these three steps to keep your coffee creator in a good mood


You're an adult. So I would imagine this goes without saying. But there is a reason I am saying it. This is the most common complaint from my Barista friends. 

If you turn up with a cup that's dirty, the cafe has to clean it. That's not something we should expect them to do.

Don't be surprised if they refuse your cup if you hand it over to them looking like you've been trying to grow your own penicillin in it. 

PRO TIP - When you've finished your coffee, rinse the cup and dry straight away. You can put it in your bag without worrying about stale milk ruining your day. 


If you have ever stood for longer than 5 minutes waiting for your takeaway, staring at the coffee machine, then looking back at your watch. Then staring at the Barista frantically frothing almond, soy, and skim -  when your order takes longer than you expected, you physically feel the tension start to build. All those stress hormones wont make your coffee turn up any faster or taste any better.  

So now imagine how the Barista is feeling?

Remember we want coffee made with love. Your order is probably the same everyday.

So lets do them a favour.

PRO TIP - Write your order on your cup with a sharpie in the format the cafe uses, or get your barista to do it for you. No more lids or scraps of paper, just a healthy hit of happiness for your coffee creator as you make their life that little bit easier. 


If your cafe sells their own branded reusable cups, support their business by purchasing a cup from them. It is a brave move by business owners to invest in these types of products and offer you a discount. So show them some love in return. 

There are few more pleasurable things in life than a good coffee with good company. 

So if you find somewhere you really like, bring your cup and tell your friends. 

For help finding the right cup or learning the differences between whats on offer, use our better cup guide to find your next reusable

Now go out and carry on being the difference we want to see in the world you wonderful bunch people

1 free coffee a week in Karratha

Imagine getting $1 off your coffee each day, it means you probably get a free coffee once a week. I know that if I am getting one free coffee a week, I am about as happy as that dog in a swing. 

Recently, Karratha businesses Empire Cafe, Soul Cafe, Sumo Salad, Dreamtime Cafe and High Tide Mobile Espresso have all signed on as part of the Responsible Cafes movement.

After learning about just how detrimental to the environment single use cups are, local business owners made a conscious decision to put the environment first. 

It means coffee drinkers who bring in their own reusable takeaway cups can now get 50¢ to $1 off their orders at the cafes. Find them here

All they ask is that you turn up with a clean cup!