Cof­fee’s fi­nally go­ing green

The Riverine Herald - - NEWS -

MUR­RAY River Tea rooms is go­ing green thanks to a gen­er­ous do­na­tion from one lo­cal.

Kevin L'Huil­lier is a reg­u­lar at the Meninya St cafe´ and de­cided to pitch an in­no­va­tive ap­proach to take­away cof­fee — plant-based cups.

The card­board cups feel just like any other, but they house some­thing ex­tra­or­di­nary — the abil­ity to com­post faster as they’re not made with petro­chem­i­cals.

While BYO cups have taken off, Kevin said he saw a need for a greater use of en­vi­ron­men­tally re­spon­si­ble sin­gle-use cups in cafes in the area.

“I raised it with a cou­ple of other cafes in town and the Mur­ray River Tea Rooms agreed,” he said.

“Hope­fully this will be a way to seed the idea for a lot of other peo­ple in town.

“I’ve been in­ter­ested in the en­vi­ron­ment for a num­ber of years now and haven’t pre­vi­ously been able to be as ac­tive as I want to.”

Kevin said he recog­nised it may take a while for the ini­tia­tive to catch on.

“These cups aren’t go­ing to change the world, but if ev­ery­one does it we would see a change — it’s about what we can do now for 30 years down the track,” he said.

And be­cause of his in­ter­est, the Mur­ray River Tea Rooms now have a year’s sup­ply of these cups.

Com­mu­nity Liv­ing and Respite Ser­vices chief ex­ec­u­tive Suzanna Barry said CLRS is grate­ful for Kevin’s con­tri­bu­tion and to ev­ery­one who sup­ports the or­gan­i­sa­tion.

“Hav­ing peo­ple like Kevin sup­port us is ter­rific for the tea rooms. We couldn’t op­er­ate with­out the sup­port of lo­cals, in­clud­ing peo­ple vol­un­teer­ing their time,” she said.

“This ini­tia­tive fits in with our com­mit­ment to the Vic­to­rian Gov­ern­ment’s TAKE2 pro­gram.”

As well as the cups, Mur­ray River Tea Rooms is also up­cy­cling old ma­te­rial for re­us­able fruit and veg­gie bags which are avail­able for pur­chase.

“We also op­er­ate our Re­cy­cla­bil­ity pro­gram where our clients are in­volved in a kerb­side pro­gram. They col­lect do­na­tions of items for our Percy St op shop and the Mur­ray River Tea Rooms,” Ms Barry said.

Mur­ray River Tea Rooms will be op­er­at­ing on ex­tended hours, open seven days a week through sum­mer.

COF­FEE TO GO: Kel­lieane McIn­tosh and Kevin L'Huil­lier show­ing the new com­postable cups Mur­ray River Tea Rooms will be us­ing.

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