PRESS RELEASE: World Refill Day

Published: 17 June 2022

Businesses in Sevenoaks are joining a global coalition of organisations for World Refill Day (16th June) to help people live with less waste and prevent plastic pollution. Growing awareness about the disastrous environmental impacts of plastics has fuelled the rising popularity of reusable and refillable drinks containers, like coffee cups and water bottles, in part thanks to City to Sea’s award-winning Refill campaign and app, which connects people to places they can eat, drink and shop without the pointless packaging.

Sevenoaks Refill Scheme have been pioneering the movement in Sevenoaks and there are now more than 25 Refill Stations listed locally on the free Refill app. This includes everything from free drinking water refills to discounts on hot drinks in a reusable cup and zero-waste shops, along with greengrocers, bakeries and even take-away food offered in reusable lunch containers.
People are still concerned about plastic pollution & trying to take action
Exclusive new polling for City to Sea released for World Refill Day (16th June) has shown that 95% of people surveyed said they were concerned about plastic pollution while 90% are taking steps to reduce their single use plastic, with 41% saying they would like to do more.
Crucially 93% of people surveyed said they would like to see more refill and reuse options available. This way of shopping leaves a good taste in the mouth with 74% people indicating that refilling makes them feel more positive (33%) or like they’re making a difference (41%).


Cost of living crisis changing the way we shop, with ethics being squeezed

However, the same research also shows that sustainability has fallen down the priority list for consumers, with cost now coming out on top; 48% of Brits report changing where they shop or what they buy in the last six months, and 60% saying they now prioritise cost over any other criteria. But the amount of plastic consumers feel forced to buy as they feel the pinch is leaving them feeling frustrated (31%), powerless (21%), and sad (13%).
On World Refill Day, City to Sea, the charity behind the campaign says it is completely unfair that consumers are being forced to ditch their ethics in the face of the cost-of-living crisis.
A lack of availability of reuse and refill options was also a significant barrier with 35% reporting it prevented them from doing more to reduce their plastic use and 42% saying it was a key reason that they were not refilling and reusing more.
Whilst some retailers estimate that reuse and refill can make products up to 15% cheaper, City to Sea’s new research showed that 40% believing that zero-waste or plastic free options are always more expensive.
Natalie Fée, the CEO and Founder of City to Sea, commented, “It’s wonderful to see local organisations like Sevenoaks Town Council joining forces with global partners to demand change. We know that time is tough at the moment for people in Sevenoaks, but as a community that cares about tackling pollution, we can carry on offering money saving refills, like free water refills, and money off take-away coffees. The #RefillRevolution is happening in Sevenoaks and we’re here working with local businesses to make sure that it is affordable and accessible. This has to be what’s right for the planet but it also has to be right for our squeezed household budgets.”


Refilling on a budget this World Refill Day

To make life easier and more affordable for shoppers City to Sea’s free Refill app, now lists hundreds of thousands of locations around the world where people can eat, drink and shop. This includes everything from independent cafes offering a discount for bringing a reusable cup, to greengrocers, bakers and to free drinking water fountains.
Already signed up to the app are other high-street chains and retailers including Costa, Starbucks, Asda and Morrisons and today for World Refill Day, they are joined by the National Trust and Cotswold Outdoors.
Ecover, the cleaning brand, are also encouraging people to refill their household cleaning by reimbursing the full recommended retail price of Ecover refills made via their Refill Rewards programme on World Refill Day.


Jonathan Letendrie, Sevenoaks Town Council:

Sevenoaks Town Council supports World Refill Day as part of our Green Community Investment Plan. You can refill at the following Sevenoaks Town Council sites; Bat & Ball Station Cafe, Bat & Ball Centre, STC offices, and the Café on the Vine. There are also many businesses aligned with the scheme in Sevenoaks, which can be seen by downloading the Refill app. Refill schemes are so important right now as we try and tackle climate change and other environmental issues, as they are a great way an individual can lower their carbon footprint and waste. The changes that individuals make are so valuable in tackling climate change, so please refill whenever you can and motivate your friends and family to take part
too! Sevenoaks Town Council encourages businesses in Sevenoaks to sign up and help us reduce plastic waste in our town.
If you have any queries, please contact:
Jonathan Letendrie