Which Reusable Coffee Cups Are The Most Eco-Friendly?

By Eco-Age

Reusable coffee cups have quickly become the must-have item of choice for people who are as caffeine-conscious as they are eco-aware. But which brand is the most eco-friendly option? We took a closer like.

Much like plastic bottles, the fear of being seen with a disposable coffee cup in hand is enough to make even the most caffeine-addicted of us forgo our morning flat white. Fortunately, the reusable coffee cup has become the coolest fashion accessory out there, with the market now overwhelmed with cups in every shade, shape and size. 

In the UK alone, 2.5 billion unrecyclable coffee cups are thrown away every year, many of them being carelessly discarded - and if a plastic lined cup is put in a bin of recyclable rubbish, it can contaminate the entire load. But as reusable alternatives gain popularity, with conferences and coffee shops handing them out to encourage sustainability, there is a chance that these too could become over-consumed. According to Plastic Education, nearly 15,000 kj/cup is require to produce just one ceramic coffee mug, and the energy-intensive production of reusable alternatives could similarly come under criticism.

So what happens when the means in which we can tackle single-use waste become another (albeit accidental) cause for over consumption? Factoring in the material used to make your cup can help to improve its efficiency and energy per use, with glass and plastic reusables requiring significantly less energy to manufacture than ceramic. Most importantly, using your cup over and over until the bitter, worn-out end will ensure your purchase is as sustainable as possible, with it only requiring 20 uses of your reusable to be more energy efficient than a throw away paper cup.

Which Reusable Coffee Cups Are The Most Eco-Friendly?