Case study: Driftwood Café – Waste Champions in Cooktown

Resources Far North Queensland

The Driftwood Café in Cooktown has implemented waste minimisation initiatives to reduce their environmental footprint generated by the café and its customers.

The café adopts a ‘shop local’ attitude and follows the waste hierarchy to eliminate, reduce, reuse, recover, treat, and lastly dispose of waste. These initiatives include:

  • residents are encouraged to use reusable coffee cups and receive a discount for their use
  • fresh juices are sold in re-used 480–520 mL glass jars. The takeaway jars are then replaced by local residents
  • receipts are emailed or texted and there are no individual serve sugar sachets
  • food scraps and coffee grounds have become a valuable resource for local farmers in creating compost
  • takeaway food containers are made from compostable sugarcane.

As a result, this small business has been able improve its waste management by recycling 78% of its waste, composting 13% and only disposing of 9%, which equals to about ½ wheelie bin of general waste per week.

These actions have earned them the Business Chamber Queensland's ecoBiz Best Practice Star Rating for Waste Management.

This case study is part of a series of case studies that have been developed as part of the Queensland Communities in Transition Project. It was prepared by The Ecoefficiency Group as part of the Clean Growth Choices Consortium with funding from Queensland Department of Environment and Science.