Innovation That Matters

Blue Bottle is trialling the concept in two of its stores | Photo source Blue Bottle Coffee

Coffee company tests reusable-cup-only policy


A US-based chain has introduced a no-single-use-cups approach in two of its locations as part of its move towards zero waste by 2020

Spotted: International coffee chain Blue Bottle recently announced a reusable-cup-only policy in two of its San Francisco area stores. The company is trialling the change in one of its new locations, as well as an already established one, both in the Bay area. CEO Bryan Meehan announced the change via a blog post in December 2019.

The company has already committed to achieving zero waste in all of its United States locations by the end of 2020. Its new initiative could remove up to 15,000 disposable cups from use each month, per café. Customers must either bring in their own reusable mug or pay a small deposit to take away one of the café’s cups. The café’s cups are returnable for cleaning and reuse.

Despite providing fully compostable cups and straws, the chain found that most customers threw them away anyway, thus not reducing landfill waste. Blue Bottle’s team acknowledges the experimental quality of its new approach, yet believes it to be essential in achieving a carbon-neutral, zero-waste business. 

Springwise has spotted other innovative ways that coffee companies are making a difference, such as bio-degradable aeroplane trays made from coffee grounds and other food waste, and a folding paper cup that leaves a spout to drink through, eliminating the need for a lid.




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