Cafe gives milk cartons a second life
BOY Espresso Bar on Tank St prides itself on reusing, reducing and recycling where it can, and now the owners are becoming more creative.
Instead of cardboard trays, the cafe uses empty milk containers for takeaway coffees.
Owner Carly Urquhart said the cafe started using the idea a couple of months ago.
“Customers kind of look at me weird when I hand their coffees over in one but then they think it’s pretty cool,” Mrs Urquhart said.
The idea came after a trip to Brisbane.
“I saw other cafes had started doing it and I thought it was clever,” she said.
“Once I saw it, I thought it was such a simple thing.
“We already recycled the cartons but we were still throwing them out so this gets another use out of them.”
She said it didn’t take much longer to prepare the cartons than it did to fold a regular cardboard tray.
“You just grab a knife, cut the holes and you’re done,” she said.
“We’re getting pretty quick at it.”
Mrs Urquhart said it was important for cafes to do their part to reduce waste.
Since opening in August 2018, the cafe has used BioCups as takeaway coffee cups and Mrs Urquhart urged other cafes to get on board.
“BioCups have been around long enough now and they’re affordable,” she said.
“It’s not something that’s putting us out of business or anything.”
Offsetting its carbon emissions is important to the cafe, even if it does cost a little more.
“If the offer’s there, why would you not pay the extra few cents for a container and have your carbon offset,” Mrs Urquhart said.
“It seems stupid not to do it.”
The cafe’s lids, straws, cutlery and takeaway boxes are also recyclable or reusable.
Mrs Urquhart said more and more people were aware of sustainability.
The cafe rewards those who make a conscious effort to reduce waste.
“You get 50c off if you bring your own cup in and we encourage people to buy a metal straw and reuse them,” she said.
“Everyone can do it, there’s no excuse.”