Podcast 21: Laura “Kitty” Cope: UYO Aotearoa Cafe Guide

Podcast 21: Laura “Kitty” Cope: UYO Aotearoa Cafe Guide
The Rubbish Trip
The Rubbish Trip
Podcast 21: Laura "Kitty" Cope: UYO Aotearoa Cafe Guide


Laura “Kitty” Cope is the Creator, Founder, Driving Force Extraordinaire of UYO Aotearoa Cafe Guide (formally, UYOC).

UYO stands for Use Your Own and is a nonprofit cafe directory. Laura launched UYO in late 2017 after seeing both David Attenborough and Jane Goodall in February 2017. The UYO directory showcases New Zealand hospitality businesses who are committed to encouraging customers to BYO cups, containers, bowls, cutlery etc. instead of expecting and accepting single-use disposables. Although UYO was initially focused on encouraging reusable coffee cups, the searchable directory goes way beyond that, sporting a range of badges that cafes/juice bars/eateries can earn to allow the public to see the awesome eco conscious things they’re doing, be that accepting BYO cups or containers, offering a discount to customers that BYO, having responsible food waste practices, willingly refilling personal water flasks for customers and non-customers alike, and so on and so forth. 

Behind the scenes of UYO, Laura works tirelessly to support cafes, communities and institutions to ditch single use disposables. In this podcast we chat with Laura about what motivates her to give a damn about busting wastefulness, her particular approach to calling out single-use behaviour, the trials and tribulations of offering a service for free, and whether a world without disposable cups is even possible.
A couple of things to note:
  1. This podcast involves a fair amount of swearing, so prepare yourself.
  2. When we sat down to chat with Laura a few weeks ago, UYO was still called UYOC. The name change occurred on 5 July. So, every time you hear UYOC in this podcast, just imagine you are hearing UYO instead. 

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