No Disposable Cup Day. When one day becomes everyday at Blenheim Palace

Eliminating single use cups for good with help from re-universe


We are excited to announce on No Disposable Cup Day, that after a successful pilot, Blenheim are taking the bold step in eliminating 400,000 single use cups annually through offering crockery (drink in) and Circular&Co. returnable cups (drink on the go).

Blenheim Palace returnable cup

With a £2 deposit, visitors scan the unique GS1 QR code on the cup which automatically opens the re-universe returns platform for speedy return and deposit refund. Visitors can also gift the deposit to Blenheim’s green initiatives or donate to charity.  

There’s no need to download (yet another) app or cause friction by asking the user to register before purchase. Each cup is embedded with RFID technology from Avery Dennison which enables full cup traceability on the re-universe platform, allowing Blenheim to manage their cup inventory with accurate data including return and reuse rates, washing status and location inventory. RFID tech also helps remove unnecessary friction for the consumer. 

Following the successful pilot, Blenheim are rolling out returnable cups across the whole visitor attraction this autumn.

How does it work?

Visitors to Blenheim Palace pay a £2.00 deposit on a returnable cup when they purchase a hot drink and get their money refunded back into their nominated bank account when they return the cup for reuse. Visitors can also donate to charity or have a floating deposit to use again and again.

We like to make things easy, so there’s no need to download (yet another) app or cause friction by asking the user to register before purchase.  Baristas also don’t have to scan cups out. 

The re-universe platform opens automatically when the visitor is ready to return the cup, by scanning the unique QR code on the cup or return point.

Each cup is uniquely identified by GS1 QR codes and supported with RFID,  which enables Blenheim to manage their cup inventory with accurate data including return and reuse rates, washing status and location inventory. RFID tech also helps remove unnecessary friction for the consumer. 

We’ve collaborated with Circular&Co. on this groundbreaking project. Their returnable cups are tested for at least 1,000 uses, the cups are ‘real world’ recyclable at end of life. Using this returnable cup just three times means it is carbon negative vs. single use.

No Disposable Cup Day – When One Day Becomes Everyday


About re-universe 

re-universe is a digital returns platform that makes it easy for people to embrace reuse and recycling in their everyday lives.   

Providing the digital backbone of a circular economy 


 

re-universe returnable cup impact

“The returnable cup scheme will eradicate single-use coffee cups on the Estate by using deposit return technology.

We believe climate change is the single biggest threat to Blenheim’s long-term survival and we’re committed to doing all we can to reduce and mitigate its impacts and help safeguard this World

Heritage Site and its resources for future generations.”

David Green – Head of Innovation, Blenheim Palace


“Avery Dennison’s RFID technology, as used by re-universe, helps precisely manage cup inventory with real-time visibility into usage, washing status and availability. A quick scan replaces manual counting and also removes unnecessary steps for the consumer by streamlining the return process.”

Peter Jackson – Avery Dennison


“The investment re-universe have made is very exciting, they are both creative and push boundaries with very innovative ideas. The use of our standards will undoubtedly future proof their customers and we are delighted to be working with them to reduce our collective dependency on single use plastic packaging.”

Jason Hale, head of product, GS1 UK



If you’d like to find out more or chat to us about a potential project please email
hello@re-universe.com


The re-universe returns platform makes it easy for people to return items for reuse or recycling, delivering a frictionless user journey and providing transparency, data and insights for industry.

enjoy, scan, return

Following the successful pilot, Blenheim are rolling out returnable cups across the whole visitor attraction this summer.

Visitors to Blenheim Palace pay a £2.00 deposit on a returnable cup when they purchase a hot drink and get their money refunded back into their nominated bank account when they return the cup for reuse. Visitors can also donate to charity or have a floating deposit to use again and again.

We like to make things easy, so there’s no need to download (yet another) app or cause friction by asking the user to register before purchase.  Baristas also don’t have to scan cups out. 

The re-universe platform opens automatically when the visitor is ready to return the cup, by scanning the unique QR code on the cup or return point.

Each cup is uniquely identified by GS1 QR codes and supported with RFID,  which enables Blenheim to manage their cup inventory with accurate data including return and reuse rates, washing status and location inventory. RFID tech also helps remove unnecessary friction for the consumer. 

We’ve collaborated with Circular&Co. on this groundbreaking project. Their returnable cups are tested for at least 1,000 uses, the cups are ‘real world’ recyclable at end of life. Using this returnable cup just three times means it is carbon negative vs single use.

Impact 

Saving carbon – delivering insights – commercially viable

Every year the scheme at Blenheim Palace will save approximately 32 tonnes of carbon, eliminating 400,000 single-use cups from the visitor attraction through a mix of ceramic cups and returnable cups. 

The scheme saves carbon, eliminates single use cups, delivers data and insights and is also commercially viable. 


“We believe climate change is the single biggest threat to Blenheim’s long-term survival and we’re committed to doing all we can to reduce and mitigate its impacts and help safeguard this World Heritage Site and its resources for future generations.

We serve over 400,000 hot drinks at Blenheim each year, so this new scheme has the potential to make a big impact. As well as incentivising people to return their used cups, the initiative also helps us to analyse behaviour and better manage cup collection”

David Green – Head of Innovation, Blenheim Palace


“Avery Dennison’s RFID technology, as used by re-universe, helps precisely manage cup inventory with real-time visibility into usage, washing status and availability. A quick scan replaces manual counting and also removes unnecessary steps for the consumer by streamlining the return process.”

Peter Jackson – Avery Dennison


“The investment re-universe have made is very exciting, they are both creative and push boundaries with very innovative ideas. The use of our standards will undoubtedly future proof their customers and we are delighted to be working with them to reduce our collective dependency on single use plastic packaging.”

Jason Hale, head of product, GS1 UK



If you’d like to find out more or chat to us about a potential project please email
hello@re-universe.com


It’s Global Recycling Day, and we’d like to thank all the #RecyclingHeroes that help make a difference in keeping our communities cleaner through recycling.

We’re proud to have collaborated with the brilliant #recyclingheroes at Bryson Recycling, MEA Borough Council and the IWMA (Irish Waste Management Association) working with their passionate teams to shine a light to government and industry on the benefits that digital can bring.

The World First Digital DRS community pilot in collaboration with Bryson Recycling and Mid and East Antrim Borough Council engaged communities to take part in the first ever digital deposit return scheme using home kerbside recycling boxes – seeing strong community participation.

The community pilot with IWMA in Dublin saw an impressive 🌟 94% return rate 🌟using real cash deposits and refunds 💶

We commissioned research by OnePoll in 2022 which suggested that nearly two thirds, 63 per cent, of people would prefer a digital deposit return scheme for drinks containers and other items, allowing them to continue to recycle at home rather than return to store.

Digital brings citizen convenience and data intelligence through item to item transparency and traceability throughout the supply chain.

We look forward to working with like minded organisations and Recycling heroes in championing digital DRS- engaging people to recycle more and helping industry with their EPR and sustainability goals.

re-universe

#DigitalDRS #GlobalRecyclingDay


Please contact hello@re-universe.com if you’d like to chat to us about increasing your circularity

Our Chairman Anthony (Tony) McGurk chats to FMCG CEO Magazine about #DRS Deficiencies and why #digitalDRS delivers a workable solution that is cost effective, convenient and environmentally sound.

You can read all about it here 👇

https://flickread.com/edition/html/63fcaecc740bd#29

#DigitalDRS #GlobalRecyclingDay


Please contact hello@re-universe.com if you’d like to chat to us about increasing your circularity

As 2022 comes to an end we reflect on our incredible breakthrough year.

Our highlights include pioneering digital reuse and recycling projects with evian WimbledonBlenheim Palace and Sainsbury’s and growing our team – with Doug Morwood joining as CEO to help accelerate and support our growth.

We loved collaborating with you in 2022 and look forward to continuing our mission, moving from linear to circular together. Enabling reuse and recycling projects with our innovative re-universe technology platform.

Engaging citizens, reaching global brands and strengthening collaborations, so that together we can influence change. 


2022 Highlights

Game – Set – Match!

This Summer we deployed our digital platform at The Championships Wimbledon 2022, partnering with evian in their first-ever reward scheme #ScanRecycleWin.

Visitors to The Championships recycled their drinks containers and got a chance to win finals tickets to Wimbledon 2023 using the re-universe recycling platform.

This is the the start of a longer term relationship with evian to explore how Digital DRS can enhance the Deposit Return Scheme planned to be introduced in Scotland in 2023 and England, Wales and Northern Ireland further in the future.

This is what evian said…

“We were delighted to launch a new recycling reward scheme at The Championships, Wimbledon 2022 in partnership with re-universe, to encourage recycling of drinks containers at Wimbledon. It was exciting to see visitors using the web-app, scanning recycling points then their bottles or cans to return them and ensure that packaging could be kept in the loop. The team were also really agile and responsive, making this activation seamless and successful!”

Pauline Gordon Brand Manager Plain Water (evian & Volvic)

LONDON, ENGLAND – JUNE 17: re-universe at Wimbledon

Digital returnable cup system at Blenheim Palace

In the Autumn we launched our returnable cup system at Blenheim Palace, a UNESCO World Heritage site, eradicating single use cups. With strong visitor engagement, this scheme gives cup-to-cup traceability and allows Blenheim to better understand visitor behaviour and impact around reuse.

Each cup has a unique QR code which, when scanned, automatically opens our re-universe returnable platform, entering the user into a prize draw and bringing visitor engagement and traceability to every cup. Initially the scheme is being trialled in the Walled Gardens and The Stables Cafe with an ambition to expand it across the entire estate as a deposit return scheme.

We are proud to be collaborating with Circular&Co. and Unisan.
Circular&Co. are pioneers in circular cups and provide the brilliant returnable cups for this initiative. Unisan create the impactful return points that capture returns.

This is what Blenheim said…

“We serve over 400,000 hot drinks at Blenheim each year, so this new scheme has the potential to make a big impact. We’ve already learned a lot and are now looking at ways to communicate more about the system with our visitors and to further incentivise their use. We believe climate change is the single biggest threat to Blenheim’s long-term survival and we’re committed to doing all we can to reduce and mitigate its impacts and help safeguard this World Heritage Site and its resources for future generations”

David Green Head of Innovation Blenheim
L-R David Green Head of Innovation Blenheim, Rachel Warren Marketing Director re-universe, Jack Butler Head of Catering Blenheim, Steve Clarke CCO re-universe, Robert Courts MP

We recently met Robert Courts MP at Blenheim and shared the scheme with him.

“It was great to have the opportunity to see the cups in action at Blenheim and to find out more about how the scheme works and its global potential.

The Digital Returnable Cup System is operated by re-universe and I am delighted to be supporting their innovative approach to sustainability and their partnership with Blenheim”

Robert Courts MP

National Recycle Week with evian and Sainsbury’s

In October we kicked off National Recycle Week with an evian and Sainsbury’s scan, recycle, win campaign. The scheme rewarded shopper for recycling, entering them into a free prize draw with the chance to win Finals Tickets to Wimbledon 2023.

re-universe at Sainsbury’s

Award Winners – Technology Excellence Award

We were delighted to win the OXBA CIS Technology Excellence Award. Held at Oxford Brookes University, the Awards benchmark excellence, and we were pleased to be recognised for our work.

Receiving the Excellence in Technology Award: L-R Neill Lawson-Smith CIS Ltd; Steve Clarke, CEO, Cryptocycle; Rachel Warren, marketing director, Cryptocycle; Tony McGurk, Chairman, Cryptocycle; Rory Bremner.

GS1 Partner

We recently became a recognised GS1 partner and our use of GS1 standards has been approved. We use unique GS1 codes locally and globally, identifying and tracking each individual item and bringing rich data and insights to every project.

This is what GS1 said…

“The investment re-universe have made is very exciting, they are both creative and push boundaries with very innovative ideas. The use of our standards will undoubtedly future proof their customers and we are delighted to be working with them to reduce our collective dependency on single use plastic packaging. This organisations values are the bedrock of their ambition. I really enjoy working with them, they are a dedicated team”

Jason Hale Head of Product GS1

Doug Morwood joins the re-universe team as CEO

This month Doug Morwood joined the re-universe team to help accelerate the massive growth opportunities ahead.

Doug is well respected within the world of reuse and brings significant expertise in circular systems and system change, including delivering transformative projects such as a 3-year EU H2020 project researching Circular Systems change and informing policy and business recommendations.

Doug will help the business in its next stage of rapid growth, working closely with the re-universe team to maximise the incredible opportunities ahead.

“I am delighted to join the dynamic team at re-universe. With alarming statistics on waste and single use, we need real-world solutions to enable circularity, and re-universe delivers just that. With successful reuse and recycling projects under their belts, I look forward to harnessing the potential of re-universe globally and locally, alongside strengthening partnerships/collaborations so that together we can influence change”

Doug Morwood – CEO re-universe

You can read more here


Thank you to everyone who helped make 2022 a brilliant year.
We look forward to working with you all in 2023 and beyond.

L-R Steve Clarke CCO, Doug Morwood CEO, Rachel Warren Marketing Director, Tony McGurk Chairman

Please contact hello@re-universe.com if you’d like to chat to us about increasing your circularity

According to water.org, over 7.7 billion plastic water bottles are used each year throughout the UK. It’s no secret that a large portion of this total comes from public outdoor events where hydration is important.

We are proud to be partnering with evian at Wimbledon this year to directly help increase the recycling initiative of the athletes and attendees. This new and exciting partnership follows our previous successful projects and shows the momentum is growing for digital reuse and digital recycling, and the benefits they can bring.

‘Return4Reward’ is evian’s first-ever digital recycling reward scheme, and will take place within the grounds and around Wimbledon town centre, to engage users and support recycling.

This initiative is the start of a longer term relationship with evian to explore how Digital DRS can enhance the Deposit Return Scheme planned to be introduced in Scotland in 2023 and England, Wales and Northern Ireland in 2024. 

How Return4Reward Works at Wimbledon

We continue to use our pioneering Reward4Waste technology to bring ease and convenience to recycling.

At Wimbledon, visitors will be invited to take part in Return4Reward. By scanning the unique QR code on the recycling points and scanning the barcode on evian drinks containers and recycling, users have the opportunity to enter a draw to win two pairs of tickets to the Wimbledon 2023 Women’s Finals – one of the most iconic summer events in the UK.

Return points can be found across the Grounds and in the Wimbledon town centre.

To be in-keeping with the event, a hawk-eye animation will then be shown within the app with the sound of a racket shot. To show the recycling has been registered, an ‘IN’ tick, similar to a successful line challenge, will then appear on the phone screen. The animation ends by telling the user ‘You’re in the draw’. This innovative user-experience will allow evian to gain and understanding on whether an engaging digital platform can help to encourage consumers to recycle.

This scheme also supports evian’s long term commitment to becoming a 100% circular brand by 2025. The Reward4Waste scheme goes hand in hand with other projects they are working on; Bottles made from Bottles, made of 100% recycled plastic (rPET)*, and the evian 5L (re)new water dispenser that lowers the use of plastics by 60% versus a single use bottle.

The Reward4Waste collaboration with evian is part of a longer-term partnership to explore the benefits of Digital DRS and Digital Recycling.

“We are incredibly proud to be partnering with one of the world’s largest drinks brands at such an iconic sporting event this Summer. Our Reward4Waste technology has proven itself in previous projects to engage citizens, and we look forward to seeing it in action at The Championships, Wimbledon.”

Tony McGurk – Chairman, Reward4Waste
Reward4Waste team
LONDON, ENGLAND – JUNE 17: The Reward4Waste Team at All England Lawn Tennis and Croquet Club on June 17, 2022 in London, England. (Photo by Tom Dulat/Getty Images for evian)

Seeing an impressive 94% return rate

The IWMA (Irish Waste Management Association) in conjunction with Panda and Reward4Waste, conducted a trial to prove the concept of a Digital Deposit Return Scheme (Digital DRS) using participants from Panda’s household waste collection in Dublin. The trial took place in July / August 2021 for 4 weeks.

This was a world-first pilot, testing citizen engagement and return rates for digital deposit and return technology.

The key differences with this trial in comparison to others is customers paid a deposit on the items purchased and redeemed the deposit when they placed the containers in their recycling bin at home. The trial also tracked the containers from the point of purchase, consumer, collector, and arrival at a sorting facility.

The goal of the trial was to prove that when using Digital DRS, the percentage return of packaging in the system is comparable to that achieved by the ‘return to retail’ conventional deposit return schemes (DRS) that uses a combination of reverse vending machines (RVM) and manual take-back.

The trial demonstrated a 94% return rate with 700 containers delivered to customers and 655 deposited in recycling bins using the Reward4Waste App.

How does the Deposit Return Scheme (DRS) work?

  • Deposit Return Schemes are government led, with the aim to reduce litter by increasing recycling.
  • They work by adding a deposit on the price of drinks sold in plastic and glass bottles and cans, which the shopper pays at point of purchase and gets back once they’ve returned that container for recycling
  • Traditional models ask citizens to return their drinks containers back to store to get their refund, using a Reverse Vending Machine

How does Reward4Waste Digital DRS work?

  • Return points / recycling bins are given a unique code, such as a QR Code, 2D matrix code, or similar
  • Drinks containers also have a unique code such as a QR code, 2D matrix code, or similar
  • Deposits are paid on the drinks containers at point of purchase (it’s included in the price of the drink)
  • Deposits are refunded at point of recycle, with the deposit placed immediately in the users wallet within the app
  • Users simply scan the return point (whether that be a home kerbside box, a smart on-the-go bin or an RVM), scan their drinks container and the recycle is registered

Why Digital DRS?

  • We believe Deposit Return Schemes don’t need to be a chore for citizens
  • Research shows people don’t want to take their drinks bottles back to store to get their refund – this is due to many reasons and includes inconvenience such as lack of time, more online shopping and lack of mobility
  • Reward4Waste makes recycling easy – and independent research backs this up, with over 90% of respondents saying Reward4Waste was easy/very easy to use in our first validation trial in Whitehead, Northern Ireland with Bryson Recycling and MEA Borough Council, with proud support from Britvic Ireland, PepsiCo and Encirc, which took place in 2020/2021. To find out more about our trial in Whitehead click here

Read the full article below…

For more information on Reward4Waste or for an interview with the team, do please get in touch…

Industry calls for Digital DRS to be included in the Deposit Return Scheme for the UK

It’s a pivotal time for DRS. In March 2021 DEFRA released the long awaited consultation document on Deposit Return Schemes, and the Environment Audit Committee also shared responses from industry stakeholders on next steps for deposit return schemes.

Digital DRS has changed the landscape, alleviating concerns over convenience, fraud, cost, cross borders, carbon footprint and accessibility. 

A Digital DRS brings technology to the fore. App based, it enables the capture of in-scope drinks containers (of any size or material) at any chosen recycling return point, so long as it has a unique scannable code. This means users can continue with their good recycling behaviour at home and still take part in the DRS scheme. Using existing infrastructure lowers the cost and carbon footprint a new model would bring, which is better for the economy and the environment. Unique coding also significantly reduces fraud and allows for flexible deposits, an important feature when it comes to cross border contamination and pack sizes.

Recent research undertaken by Queens University Belfast on behalf of CryptoCycle (founders of Reward4Waste) and Bryson Recycling, highlights the key barriers to a conventional DRS system. The top barriers were: having to travel to a central return point, queueing to deposit items, having to use public transport (which could impact those on a lower income or with poor mobility) and the environmental impact of incremental journeys. Many of these findings are also backed up by Kantar research commissioned by DEFRA[1]

Ironically, the very audience a conventional DRS is supposed to appeal to (younger consumers who are more likely to litter on-the-go) are the ones that are most likely to find a conventional DRS more cumbersome and less likely to use it. Without digital DRS we are in danger of doing more damage than good when it comes to reducing litter and increasing good recycling behaviour.

A digital DRS does not come without its own challenges. For it to work effectively, digitisation would need to take place, with in-scope bottles and cans having unique codes placed on each individual item. Deposit return points would also require a unique code. However, this is without doubt the future of a true circular economy, allowing for traceability of waste, immutability, rich insights and data – for cradle to grave accountability.

The digital DRS movement is growing and gaining momentum.

The Welsh Government recently set up a Digital DRS workshop with key stakeholders to discuss how a Digital DRS could look like in Wales, and across the UK a digital DRS industry group comprising of leading retailers, drinks producers and materials bodies, has been formed to further understand the role that Digital DRS could play.

Digital DRS is now on the agenda, with hybrid schemes being discussed, where a Digital DRS enhances the conventional RVM model, bridging the gap between the needs of consumers and organisations, with less cost and less environmental impact. DEFRA have agreed that this is an interesting area that needs further exploration.

Dave Dalton, CEO, British Glass said:

With glass being 100% and endlessly recyclable, the British glass industry is always working to increase the amount of recycled glass remelted back into new bottles and jars. The glass sector has always embraced innovation having pioneered UK recycling with the introduction of bottles banks in the 1970’s. Like every other aspect of our lives, we believe technology has the potential to radically improve recycling. Instead of relying on expensive reverse vending machines, let’s keep glass recycling at our doorsteps which is convenient, more engaging and better for our environment.”

Adrian Curry, Managing Director at Encirc, added: 

“We very much favour a digital deposit return scheme as a solution for glass. This would mean people could scan their bottles at home, redeem their deposits online without the need to leave the house, and continue to use their existing household recycling collection bins. We think it would be a far more effective solution than people having to travel on cars and buses to reverse vending machines in shops, laden with bags of glass. The technology is there to do it and there are trials happening right now across the UK to show how a digital version can work well.   We know that a traditional in-store deposit scheme just doesn’t work for glass. It promotes the use of more plastic, costs well over a billion pounds to introduce and the impact on recycling rates for glass are questionable at best.”

Proven Trial

Trial launched by Minister Poots in Whitehead Northern Ireland

CryptoCycle created Reward4Waste, an app that rewards users for recycling or returning their packaging. The simple to use and intuitive app ‘captures’ good recycling behaviour and rewards users for recycling. Captured items are tracked through the circular economy, bringing cradle to grave accountability. Using green blockchain and AI, Reward4Waste brings a level of consumer behavioural data around sustainability and recycling never seen before. 

In Whitehead Northern Ireland, CryptoCycle collaborated with Bryson Recycling and Mid and East Antrim Borough Council to run a Reward4Waste trial across 2000 households. The 16 week trial included ‘home kerbside’ and ‘on-the-go’ recycling. Unique codes were placed across all drinks in plastic bottles, glass bottles, cans and HDPE milk, with varying deposit refunds. Using the Reward4Waste app, residents scanned the unique code on their kerbside recycling boxes or on-the-go recycling bins, scanned the bottles and recycled to claim their reward points, which were immediately added to the app. 

The trial was supported by Britvic Ireland, PepsiCo and Encirc and proved that Reward4Waste works seamlessly with existing waste infrastructure. 

Initial results are positive. Independent analysis is being undertaken by Queens University Belfast and the full report is due to be released soon.

Tony McGurk, CryptoCycle Chairman commented “All our research is pointing to a Digital DRS being the right solution for the UK, whether as stand-alone or as a hybrid with RVM’s.[1] Reward4Waste has delivered a successful proof of concept with excellent consumer engagement, and we are in talks with industry partners on further trials. 

The consumer is at the heart of what we do. The Reward4Waste app journey is simple and seamless, and the back end has patent pending technology including green blockchain and AI for a secure and immutable solution”

Digital DRS comes with unquestionable benefits, but with a highly complex waste industry, new innovations are often daunting.

Which leads to the question – has the UK got the bottle?

For further information or for a further interview please contact hello@reward4waste or visit www.reward4waste.com

L-R Tony McGurk, Rachel Warren, Steve Clarke

—————— notes ———————-

  1. A DRS is expected to cost over £1 billion in its first year and £814 million per annum thereafter. The tangible economic benefits are expected to be less than £100 million per year. In financial terms, a DRS would be highly inefficient, largely because kerbside collection already recovers 72 per cent of these containers. Institute of Economic Affairs 2019
  2. Consumer Research to inform design of an effective Deposit Return Scheme – Kantar Research commissioned by DEFRA Aug 2019
  3. Factors such as convenience, ease of use, and time spent at return points will carry a heavy influence of usage of the scheme” “It may be more challenging to shift people’s behaviours away from home. A DRS must be designed to be convenient and time efficient to ensure it is accessible to all groups in society”Consumer Research to inform design of an effective Deposit Return Scheme – Kantar Research commissioned by DEFRA Aug 2019

    Younger consumers (16-24) are less likely to use a conventional DRS. They find recycling ‘burdensome’ and were less likely to make lifestyle changes to recycleConsumer Research to inform design of an effective Deposit Return Scheme – Kantar Research commissioned by DEFRA Aug 2019

4. 30% of people use the bus or walk to the supermarket and 4% have someone else shop for them Dept of Transport

There is a cost to consumers and a high carbon cost for their extra journeys. The cost to consumers per Scottish Govt impact assessment of these additional journeys is between 0.5p and 1.5p per container which equates to a staggering £125 – 375m for the UK and a very damaging CO2 impact.

77% of people now do some of their supermarket shopping online (Waitrose BBC article)

91% of adults have access to a smartphone in 2020 per Deloitte Digital Consumer Trends

23% of households do not have a car accessible to them (Statista 2019)

The economic, ethical and carbon footprint do not stack up. The cost estimated for introducing a conventional DRS is £1bn with ongoing costs of £814m p.a.

The same amount of expenditure (or indeed far less) could upgrade the entire country’s MRF facilities, add further capacity of leading edge sorting and processing technology, enable the UK to properly process all of its plastic waste and stop exporting it to countries that frequently do not process it properly

Enable huge reductions in carbon footprint from reduction in transport costs of waste material by using existing infrastructure and increase in material captured and thereby a reduction in virgin plastic use

Queens University are carrying out independent research on the Reward4Waste trial in Whitehead Northern Ireland, full analysis will be available soon. Top line findings show
– Resistance to a conventional DRS, with questions around the carbon footprint
– Reluctance to go out of the home to recycle
– Strong support for a digital DRS solution
– Reward4Waste app simple and easy to use
– Consumers aged between 13-80 regularly took part in the trial

Tony McGurk talks to MRW

We were delighted to be asked to feature in Materials Recycling World by Andrea Lockerbie.

Tony chats to Andrea about the benefits of a Digital DRS and how Reward4Waste is best set to tackle a Digital DRS, working alongside existing waste infrastructure.

In this interview, Tony explains how Reward4Waste

  • Changes consumer behaviour through rewarding people for good recycling behaviour
  • Tracks and traces provenance of individual packaging through the circular economy
  • Can be used across all materials, plastic, glass, tin and textiles
  • Our proven trial in Whitehead NI shows Reward4Waste is inclusive of all demographics
  • Was created to make a positive difference to the waste crisis

Read the full article below…

For more information on Reward4Waste or for an interview with the team, do please get in touch…

2020 has been a year like no other

Amongst all the challenges we have found reasons to celebrate, and we would like to share some of them with you…

Reward4Waste app created

With the consumer at the heart of everything we do, the app (created by Relative) offers front end simplicity with back end intelligence, increasing recycling through rewards and tracking individual packaging through the circular economy.

Take a look at the app here


Trial in Whitehead, NI

We launched our first public trial in collaboration with Bryson Recyclingand Mid & East Antrim Borough Council, with DAERA Minister Edwin Poots launching and supporting the trial. The local community joined in, featuring in the advertising and requesting an extension to the trial. The launch saw Reward4Waste featured on BBC and other media.


Supported by Major Brands

The trial gained support from Britvic IrelandPepsiCo and Encirc, with further support from SPAR.

The trial includes plastic, HDPE, tin and glass materials in different sizes, across 2000 households across Whitehead NI for at home and on-the-go recycling.


Enhancing Existing Infrastructure

The trial proved that Reward4Waste works successfully with existing waste infrastructure, enhancing current kerbside collections whilst allowing for out of home recycling capture also – so that consumers can conveniently recycle at home and on-the-go, claiming rewards with every recycle captured.


Engaging all Ages

From 13-80, the Reward4Waste app is being used successfully across all ages.

With 95% of households in the UK owning a mobile phone, Reward4Waste is inclusive to all, allowing for people to recycle and be rewarded at home and on-the-go.


Supporting the Community

Over 45% of residents have donated their Reward Points to local charities, helping those in need through recycling their used packaging. 

The remaining have redeemed their Reward Points for SPAR vouchers. 


Showcasing our Technology

We were invited to showcase Reward4Waste at the Welsh Government / KTN ‘Developing a Digital DRS’ workshop with over 70 attendees.

We were delighted to share our successful trial results and explain how Reward4Waste works


Strategic Relationships Formed

We are delighted to have signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Reverse Logistics Group which enhances our offering to partners and areas that require a complete solution for Deposit Return Schemes.


Looking Forward to 2021

We are excited for all that 2021 brings, with a larger DRS trial on the horizon, non DRS loyalty programmes being discussed, festivals and event opportunities and global projects to work on, we are well placed to drive Reward4Waste forward and help revolutionise recycling.

Please follow us on social media, subscribe to our newsletter or get in touch if you would like to find out more about Reward4Waste and how it could help your community or business reduce waste and keep packaging within the circular economy.

This is the future for all returnable packaging

The consumer journey

Front end simplicity – back end intelligence. No more opaque provenance. No more confused citizens.

The journey may differ by project, but all share a common goal, to make it easy for people to return items for reuse or recycling. Reducing waste and keep valuable items in the circular economy for longer.

 

1. Get your phone
2. Scan the code
3. Be engaged
4. Return item
5. Get deposit / rewards

Digital Intelligence

We’ve created a platform that you can depend on. Using unique coding, green blockchain and AI to prevent fraud, bring transparency and manage provenance.

Digital <strong>Intelligence</strong>

The Blog

We are seeing more people than ever relying on connected tech to help them manage almost every aspect of daily life, with the last 12 months seeing remarkable growth when it comes to digital usage – the last 12 months have brought about a decade’s worth of behavioural change

The <strong>Blog</strong>

Rich data

The Reward4Waste app makes recycling easy – incentivising and rewarding people for good recycling behaviour. The app captures any uniquely coded item and registers its recycle through the uniquely coded bin or return point. 


Rich <strong>data</strong>

Making recycling easy

The Reward4Waste app makes recycling easy – incentivising and rewarding people for good recycling behaviour. The app captures any uniquely coded item and registers its recycle through the uniquely coded bin or return point. 


Making recycling <strong>easy</strong>

The Team

Reward4Waste is created by a team with expertise in technology and brands, our team is growing to reflect the need for a trusted platform that enables circularity through unique coding which inspires people to do the right thing.

The <strong>Team</strong>

Memberships

FAQs

We are known as pioneers in digital returns, having run 2 world-first Digital DRS projects in 2020/2021 and in 2022 we collaborated with Danone on an evian project at Wimbledon, reaching over 500,00 visitors. Our cup reuse project can be found at Blenheim Palace and is due to roll out this summer 2023.

Please get in touch and we can chat through how re-universe can work in your organisation.

1. Transforming consumer behaviour around reuse and recycling – the app incentivises and rewards consumers for good behaviour, whilst having the ability to bring transparency and traceability to the supply chain

2. Bringing incremental economic value through the recycled and re-used items – a true circular economy

3. Immutable, secure and auditable – tracking packaging end to end with smarter solutions

4. Capturing data and insights over time to understand consumer behaviour

5. Depending on the scheme, re-universe can work within existing waste management and infrastucture – reducing costs and carbon footprint

6. re-universe offers a real chance to accelerate change and make a positive difference

7. re-universe brings consumer ease to reuse and recycling

All of our live projects can be found on our website, we are working on a number of projects yet to appear so watch this space!

If you would like to talk to us about a potential collaboration please get in touch at hello@re-universe.com

We are not currently raising funds through external funding rounds.

However, we are always interested in talking to potential investors, particularly those who can bring relevant knowledge and experience.

If you are interested in potentially investing in us then please contact us by emailing hello@re-universe.com

With billions of single use coffee cups ending up UK in landfill every year, it’s encouraging to see the rise in returnable and reusable cup schemes.

There really is no excuse for single use – but for mass engagement and take-up reuse has to be easy and frictionless.

So what’s the answer?

We believe it is re-universe. Our pioneering digital returns platform drives behavioural change and brings rich data and insights.

Tried and tested at Blenheim Palace in collaboration with Circular&Co. and rolling out across the summer, over 95% of users have said the platform is easy/very easy to use.

If you are looking for a return-for-reuse cup scheme that offers the below benefits (and more!) then get in touch…

😁 Consumer benefits
👍 No need to download an app
👍 No need to register bank details before use
👍 Return simply through tech-enabled returns
👍 Get deposit back into nominated bank account with minimal / no bank charges – quickly, easily, securely
👍 Donate to charity or have a floating deposit that can be used again and again

😁 Brand benefits
👍 Behavioural change insights to drive returns
👍 Validation of returns to reduce fraud
👍 Rich data and insights
👍 Cup-to-cup traceability
👍 Measurable scheme
👍 Multi-lingual and multi-brand
👍 Future-proofed for scaleability

Want to find out more?
Drop us an email 👉 hello@re-universe.com
We’d love to hear from you.

Deposit return schemes (DRS) are becoming more and more common all around the world. When you purchase a drink in a plastic bottle (in some cases glass) you’ll be charged a small deposit at point of purchase. When you return the bottle for recycling, you will receive your deposit back.

How your deposit is returned to you is dependent on how the country runs their DRS. In some nations, you’ll need to return the bottle to a Reverse Vending Machine (RVM) at a superstore or other retail location. In other countries, the bottle will need to be returned to a designated recycling point (like a council run tip or waste management site). Regardless of the location, the deposit is always able to be claimed back.

The UK government has announced a DRS will be introduced in England, Wales and Northern Ireland in 2024, with Scotland looking to introduce a DRS earlier.

re-universe have developed a system where deposits for beverage containers will be returned through an app that gives an instant reward or loyalty card style collection of points dependent on how the consumer wishes to be rewarded for recycling. This is known as Digital DRS and we are known in the industry as the Digital DRS pioneers.

We have run 2 World-first projects in Northern Ireland and Dublin and look forward to running more Digital DRS projects in the future.

We are really excited to be working with Blenheim Palace to eradicate single use, starting with cups, using our pioneering digital returnable cup scheme this summer, in collaboration with Circular&Co.

We couldn’t be prouder!

“We are rolling out a digital return-for-reuse cup scheme, eradicating single-use cups across Blenheim Palace. This important initiative eradicates single-use cups across Blenheim and reflects our commitment to becoming carbon neutral on scopes 1-3 of the Greenhouse Gas (GHG) protocol by 2027.

Visitors to Blenheim will be offered the choice of a ceramic or returnable cup when they purchase a hot drink. They will pay a deposit which they will get back when they return the cup for reuse.

Using pioneering digital technology from re-universe, there is no need to download an app or register before use. This was important to us because we want our visitors to be able to buy a coffee quickly and easily – without adding friction to their visit. When the cup is returned visitors are offered multiple options, including the ability to get their refund back digitally, donate to charity or other green initiatives.

We’ve been working with re-universe and Circular&Co. on this groundbreaking project for many months, which included running a pilot and learning and optimising in readiness for full rollout this summer.

We look forward to sharing lessons learnt and best practices to help other like-minded organisations jump on board and eradicate single use.”

David Green – Head of Innovation

re-universe technology is the cornerstone of many recycling and reuse projects that you may already be involved in! Please look at our website for more information.

Global smartphone ownership grows daily. According to recent research, in the UK 95% of all households in the UK own a mobile phone, with 78% of those using a smart phone and this number is growing fast.

Having an app based solution makes re-universe easy and convenient to use, however, for those without a smart phone, we have a home scan option.

re-universe uses GS1 global standards unique codes, or serialisation, which are placed on each individual item (either on the physical product or a receipt). We also use RFID technology for track and trace benefits.

Digitisation is without doubt the future of a true circular economy, allowing for traceability of waste, immutability, flexibility, rich insights and data – for cradle to grave accountability.

We are GS1 partners.

Returnable cup system

Jump on board to eliminate single use cups for good
with help from re-universe