Member Spotlight: Skull and Swallow Cafe

The Skull and Swallow cafe is located in the iconic Commonwealth Hotel and is officially a Plastic Free Champion member. Over the past few years, thanks to the support from their local community, they've made gradual changes and are well along in their waste reduction journey.



When did you first learn about the damage plastics do to our environment?

Many moons ago, when I was a young teen.


What prompted you to become a Plastic Free Townsville member?


It’s a free service that helped us to make well informed decisions. We’ve changed some of the products we use to more planet friendly ones, which has always been an aim of ours.


What has been the easiest change for you to make?


Changing from plastic bottles to glass bottles for water and soft drink.


What has been the most challenging change to make? 

Changing a few containers for takeaway food. Like sauce containers but with the help

of Plastic Free Townsville it was much easier.



Where do you see the industry headed when it comes to plastics & single-use waste? 

There is still a long way to go in the hospitality industry but if we all just try to do a

little bit better, it will make a big difference.


Do you have any comments or tips to encourage other businesses owners along the waste reduction journey? 

It doesn’t have to cost more. Diana gave us suggestions that  meant we used fewer disposables and saved us money. Training staff to understand what you’re trying to achieve and just to just recycle properly is a great start.




Skull and Swallow Cafe have made some big changes since joining Plastic Free Townsville, including:

  • Switching to compostable coffee cup lids, cutlery, food takeaway packaging

  • Switching away from plastic water bottles to glass and ensuring other drinks are either in glass or cans

  • Not giving out plastic bags

  • Switching away from ice cream dixie cups for the kids to ice cream in a cone (no plastic and no spoon needed)

  • Becoming a Green Caffeen reusable cup network member