If people are prepared to pay $5 for an ordinary coffee, surely there is no longer an argument that environmentally friendly cups are too expensive.
Although my preference is for a re-usable cup, my KeepCup being my favourite, sometimes it just isn’t possible. Sometimes you really need a coffee when you don’t have your KeepCup on you. So if I must use a disposable cup, I would at least like to know that it is making as minimal environmental impact as possible.
I have recently been pleased to see BioCups being used more and more in cafes. When I see this I always let the café know that I think is great, and that it will encourage me to buy coffee there again. But what is a BioCup? And does it really make a difference?
|BioCups from www.biopak.com.au|
Well, according to the BioPak website, BioCups tick all of these boxes. BioCups are lined with bioplastic derived from corn starch, not petroleum-based plastic. This is Good. The paper used to produce BioCups comes from plantations, and BioPak offset carbon emissions from this process. I would prefer that they were made from recycled paper, but this is far from a bad second. It’s actually a pretty Good option.
Interestingly, the BioPak website suggests that as the cup is biodegradable, the best way to dispose of it is in compost. I have to admit this seems a little impractical to me, but as they are biodegradable even if they end up in landfill it is better than a traditional paper cup lined with petroleum based plastic.
There are a couple of different types of lids, one of which is plastic. It can be recycled – not my favourite option as these usually end up in the bin. There is a compostable option – which I much prefer.
BioPak claims that in Australia and New Zealand over 1.5 billion paper cups are disposed of each year. That’s a lot of cups. And a lot of coffee. The best option is clearly to keep your KeepCup in your handbag. But in a coffee emergency, the BioCup is a Good option.
And if we are now paying $5 for a cup of coffee, goddamn it I expect the café owner to chip in a few extra cents to give it to me in a Good cup.
Otherwise I might just get really cranky.