Every morning I walk into the café near my office, they greet me and confirm my coffee order as I hand over my Keep Cup. I have two, in different sizes, depending on how desperate I am for a caffeine fix. A 8oz, for a flatwhite, or a longer coffee, and a 4oz, for those days that demand a macchiato or short black. The smaller cup never fails to elicit squeals of delight from the baristas and café staff. The cute size, and equally cute colours, means it is often mistaken for a babycino cup, and for the baristas at my regular café that is part of the joy. ‘It looks so cute and innocent on the outside, but inside, it’s rocket fuel; as potent as coffee gets’ she exclaimed when I brought it in for the first time.
I am a regular coffee drinker, but not a big coffee drinker. I would go through about 6 takeaway coffee’s a week, which according to the calculator on the Keep Cup website is over 300 paper cups, and 4kg of landfill per year. If you’re a bigger coffee drinker – 2 per day, which is not uncommon – you’re looking at over 700 paper cups and 10kg of landfill per year.
The key to getting the most from a reusable cup, is to plan. You need to work out your plan of attack. It is pretty easy for me, since I work in an office, and don’t usually move around a lot during the week. So I wash my cup at lunchtime, while I’m waiting for my lunch to heat up in the microwave or for the sandwich press to do its magic. Then it’s clean and back on my desk ready for tomorrow.
If you move around a lot during the week, you will need to think about it a bit more. Maybe you can just rinse it out with a bit of water and seal it up and keep it with your lunch stuff until you get home. I have been known to just swivel the plug over on my Keep Cup and chuck it in my backpack, then wash it in the bathroom sink of my hotel room at the end of the day, when I’m travelling for work.
This is not a promotional post for Keep Cup, they are simply the reusable coffee cup that works for me, and have the benefit of working well for most baristas too. I have often seen people turn up with a travel mug that doesn’t fit under the groupset, so the café has to use a disposable cup and transfer the coffee shot to the travel mug – which seems to me to defeat the purpose. But if a travel mug works for you and your café then go with that. Or, if your café is really close (and hence there are less opportunities for spillage on the way back), there’s nothing stopping you from using a regular mug either!
As a bonus, you may find that your café offers a discount if you bring your own cup (I get 50c off at mine). So not only are you reducing your impact on the environment, you’re saving money too!
How many coffee cups do you use in a week? Have you thought about taking your own cup to a café with you?