Disposable takeaway cups are the new uncool

Be honest –  if you’re buying takeaway coffee in a disposable cup, you’re probably not recycling those cups 100% of the time.

Hands up if you’re still buying your coffee in a takeaway cup?

It’s been a year since the ABC’s War on Waste documentary took a close look at the impact of disposable coffee cups on the environment, and suffice to say that not much has actually changed: most people are still buying their coffee in takeaway cups.

Yep, our takeaway cups are recyclable and compostable, but how many actually make it into the recycle bin? Where the heck are the public green waste bins? I don’t see them in the street. Is there one in your office? When you get home does your empty hit your recycle bin? 

The good news is that as well as being better for the planet, using a reusable cup is also better for your bank balance. This is because most cafés, including Derailleur, offer a discount when you present your own cup.

50 cents. I’ll say it again, 50 flipping cents! That’s how much I’ll knock off your coffee each time you bring your own cup into my cafe.  If you’re super thrifty, rock up with an old-fashioned mug. Otherwise, buy a reusable cup from me for $13.50 and I’ll give you a free coffee. That’s worth $4.50, so your new cup really only costs you $9.

Nine bucks and you’re a bona fide environmentally conscious coffee connoisseur. You are also super frigging smart ‘coz if you do the math: after 18 coffee hits back at Derailleur you’ll break even on your investment. In a year’s time your caffeine habit will be beating the All Ordinaries, your super fund and smashing the CPI. Who said going green doesn’t make financial sense?

Let’s kick the disposable takeaway cup habit further:

  1. Disposable takeaway cups are the new uncool. Australians use a billion of these each year and they’re piling up in landfill and fast becoming a pollution hazard. When you’re waltzing the streets with your disposable cup you might think it makes you look like a busy, successful person. In reality, your disposable cup makes you as uncool as Adani's coal mine.

  2. Coffee tastes better in a non-cardboard cup. Unless you have three sugars in it. Trust me.

  3. You need to rinse/clean your reusable cup before coming into a cafe. Alternatively, use our kitchen or our massive laundry sink in the courtyard. 

  4. Ordering a coffee in a takeaway cup and dining-in is wasteful. Just use a ceramic mug, because if we lined up all the coffee cups used each year in Australia they would stretch round the world…twice! (I appreciate that there are people who require a straw and lid to enable them to physically drink their coffee, no worries as we have compostable cups and biodegradable straws for those customers).

  5. Know that sometimes you’ll forget your reusable cup. Or you’ll lose it or break it. When this happens, take it as fate that you were meant to dine in. Or go to Vinnies or the Salvos and raid their reusable cup collection to build your supply. One for the car, one for home and one for work. You could even leave one at your favourite cafe for emergencies.

If you don’t have a reusable cup yet, I’ve got an offer for you - an environmental loan! When you next come in for a takeaway coffee without your reusable cup, I’ll offer you a new one, for free. Then I’ll put your name on a mug on the counter and each time you buy a takeaway coffee with your reusable cup, I’ll charge you full whack. That 50 cents you would have saved goes into the mug. When it gets to the full price of the reusable cup ($13.50) you get to give me that money. And as a reward you get that free coffee everyone else gets when they buy a reusable cup from us.

Simple?  Yep, so let’s get going.  I reckon you’ll have three reusable cups in no time. ;-)

Do you use a reusable cup? If so, do you have any tips to share?