On 16th June, we’ll be celebrating World Refill Day. It’s an awareness day to encourage individuals, businesses and large organisations to ditch single-use plastics and reduce plastic pollution.

Many cafés understandably stopped accepting refillable bottles and cups during the COVID-19 pandemic for health and hygiene reasons, but the downside was that the use of single-use plastics rose again. According to a statement signed by over a hundred scientists, the evidence suggests that organisations can safely use reusables again, as long as they’re practicing basic hygiene of course! That’s why the main message of this year’s World Refill Day is to encourage organisations to get reusables back on the menu.

Reusable water bottles are being used more frequently and, indeed, have become big business. In fact, globally, the market is expected to have an annual growth rate of 4%, with an estimated value of nearly $85bn by 2028.

Tap water vs bottled water

In the UK, tap water is clean, and safe enough to drink. Water companies have a legal responsibility to continually test the water quality to show it’s safe for drinking (there are fewer regulations about bottled water). You may want to filter your tap water to take out some of the minerals, especially in hard water areas, or remove the small amounts of chlorine that are used to make the water safe for drinking.

In essence, filtered tap water and bottled mineral water are just as tasty as each other, and tap water is significantly cheaper and doesn’t come with the high environmental costs of production, transportation and the disposal of single-use plastics required for bottled water.

Join the refill revolution

The Refill organisation has an app that consumers can download which will direct them to the nearest café, pub, shop or business that is willing to refill their water bottle. This could mean boosted footfall through your businesses doors. The app also covers other types of refills, including tea and coffee, lunches, and shopping, so they can spread their refill wings and help to save our rivers and seas from even more plastic pollution. Does your business offer refills of water, coffee or groceries? It’s easy to get listed on the app and join the refill revolution.

Why your business should offer refills

The more consumers use reusables, the fewer single-use cups and takeaway boxes your business needs to supply. Your business will save money help towards saving the planet. Surely that’s got to be worth it. And with any luck you’ll encourage more and more people to do the same and join the refill revolution.

Find out more about what your business can do to be more sustainable and water efficient here. Our free Water Efficiency Guide is packed with easy and practical tips to help your business save water and money.

man in cafe with water man in cafe with water