NEWS | Industry Updates High-tech public bottle refill stations debut at Scottish Parliament

Scottish Water has unveiled the first of its new purpose-built ‘Top up Taps’ outside the Scottish Parliament in Edinburgh. The public refill stations will be rolled out in around 30 towns and cities throughout Scotland over the next two years, encouraging people to top up their refillable bottles whilst on the go. The Top up Taps are part of a new breed of high-tech sturdy hygienic fountains supplied by British firm MIW Water Cooler Experts, which earlier this year helped establish the London Drinking Fountain Fund, installing water stations across London as part of the #OneLess movement with the Greater London Authority. MIW was also behind the drinking fountains installed in Borough Market, ZSL London Zoo, Wimbledon Tennis Club and Heathrow Airport. Scottish Water plans to work with every local authority to identify suitable locations and aims to have the first 10 Top up Taps installed by the end of March 2019. Other sites being considered include Glasgow, Ayr, Dumfries, Dunfermline, Fort William, Milngavie, Oban, Inverness and Aberdeen. The commitment to piloting a network of public refill points was

set out by the Scottish Government in its 2018 Programme for Government. The Top up Tap installation programme forms part of Scottish

Water’s ‘Your Water Your Life’ campaign, which aims to highlight the benefits that topping up with tap water can bring in terms of health and wellbeing, cost, waste reduction and impact on the environment. Each unit is made from marine-grade steel and will be plumbed

into the mains water supply and fitted with technology by MIW Water Cooler Experts which will enable water usage to be digitally tracked at each location. The utility company will be able to quantify the reduction in single-use plastic bottles and the volume of water used by the public. Douglas Millican, Scottish Water chief executive, said: “The

creation of a new network of public Top up Taps across the country as part of our Your Water, Your Life campaign, is a significant boost

Deputy Presiding Officer Linda Fabiani MSP and Douglas Millican - Scottish Water Chief Executive and runners

in encouraging more people to choose to drink tap water in their daily lives. “Our research shows that people feel very positively towards the

quality of Scotland’s tap water – now these state-of-the-art taps can provide access to enable water drinkers to enjoy it while on the go by carrying and using refillable bottles.” Mike Winter, CEO, MIW Water Cooler Experts, said: “With 16

million plastic bottles ending up in landfill or polluting waterways in the UK every day and plastic bottles taking up to 450 years to break down, it’s essential that we ditch our reliance on single-use plastic for refreshment. Scottish Water’s commitment to providing a network of refill stations is a fantastic step to reducing plastic waste. These latest models of outdoor refill stations are specially designed to be durable, fast and accessible to those with physical disabilities, making them ideal for high traffic public areas.”

National Tea Day partners with European Coffee Expo

National Tea Day has partnered with European Coffee Expo 2019 to create tea led content to engage executives from across the hospitality industry. The partnership will see National Tea Day co-host a dedicated tea theatre within the

new European Tea Expo zone for the first time. This development is expected to boost the tea element of the event to meet the sector’s need to improve its tea offering and maximise customer satisfaction, sales and profitability. John Bednall, CEO, European Coffee Expo said: “European Coffee Expo is a show

for stakeholders from all over the beverage industry where tea is a fast-growing part of the product mix and working with National Tea Day positions tea in a leading light.” Diaz Ayub, commercial director at National Tea Day said: “Tea is at a critical time in

its hospitality journey. Venues are realising they need to upgrade their offering and are seeking new knowledge to help them do this. European Coffee Expo has shown a real commitment to creating genuinely innovative tea content.”

Tea has seen a huge premiumisation in the past two years with consumers increasingly demanding a better-quality product and

experience and are prepared to pay more for it. It follows the trend of coffee which has transformed into a premium artisan product. Diaz adds: “The sessions will feature tea masterclasses, seminars and pairings so attendees can understand how tea can become more

profitable. A well thought out tea strategy can see increased yield, improved footfall and most importantly happier customers.” He added: “We strongly recommend that tea brands embrace this as the forum where they can meet buyers who have a real commitment to offering a better type of hot beverage to their consumers.” European Coffee Expo is taking place at London Olympia on the May 21 & 22, 2019. National Tea Day takes place every year on April 21 and is the official day in the UK to celebrate our love of tea.

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