Photo by Caitlin Mills

Mercedes Me Gets An Eco Makeover From Joost Bakker

In collaboration with ST. ALi, the Melbourne store is removing all disposable takeaway cups, and celebrating the transition to sustainability with a one-off installation.

Miriam McGarry
11th of September 2019

Using a disposable coffee cup now (rightfully) often elicits a judgemental glance when walking down the street. In an era where we understand the impacts of climate crisis, there is little excuse for forgetting a Keep Cup. 

Melbourne’s Mercedes me Store understands the necessity of environmental sustainability, and is lowering its carbon footprint through removing all disposable coffee cups from the store. 

Horst von Sanden, Mercedes-Benz Australia/Pacific CEO and Managing Director explains that the store would be of the first cafes in Australia to utilise the new ‘Returnr cup, and environmental initiative which aims to replace single-use takeaway packaging with an equivalent reusable solution.’ 

The team have St. Ali on board, to ensure the Returnr cups will be filled with the most delicious coffee. The initiative requires a $6 deposit from customers, who then borrow a high-quality custom mug, and receive a refund when returned.

The switch to this Returnr model is celebrated with an installation by enviro-icon Joost Bakker. Drawing upon research from the Australian Government which found that each person in the nation generates an average of 130kg of plastic per year (of which only 12% is recycled), Joost is using 130kg to ‘suspend an organic installation, mimicking what we are doing, blending synthetic materials with our natural world.’ 

Joost explains ‘what’s inspiring to know is that the volume is reducing, consumer awareness is driving change, schools are going zero waste and business leaders are demanding a change to a circular economy.’ Time to caffeinate, there is work to do!

Joost’s installation will be on display at Mercedes me Store until September 20th, the day of the Global Climate Crisis Strike

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