Starbucks is very concerned that its many, many paper coffee cups end up in landfills. Fast Company has a long-read look at how Starbucks has made recycling its coffee cups a top priority. One of the major, dispiriting observations (the quote is from a Starbucks official):
" 'It's a customer's choice whether or not to recycle.' That's a pretty profound, startling admission of powerlessness. All of Starbucks's efforts can collapse in the single second it takes to shove a paper cup into the wrong can."
All of this recycling worry would go away, of course, if customers would just bring in their own washed, reusable cups. But only 1.5 per cent of Starbucks customers do that, the story says.
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We would also save a bit of landfill space if we took in our own containers (with lids) the next time we want to buy a chunk of BBQ pork or scoop of potato salad. I've never done this. Maybe I'll try it, and see if the person behind the counter is willing.
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All this reminds me of the "green" pizza box. Its maker says it's all recycled paper. The top of the box can be broken down into plates, the bottom can be folded into a leftovers container. There's more details at the GreenBox blog.
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