A California company — Reduce. Reuse. Grow. — has a Kickstarter campaign that I hope helps them to reach their goal and gain success for their innovative product: biodegradable coffee cups made from plantable paper that can be planted to grow into trees and flowers. After the consumer drinks their coffee, they unravel the cup, soak it in water for 5 minutes and then plant it. Or, if you’re lazy, throw it away and it will decompose after 180 days (or perhaps even start a flower garden at the landfill). According to carryyourcup.org, Americans throw away 25 BILLION styrofoam coffee cups every year. This plantable idea seems like a phenomenal solution. What I don't understand is how they can allow hot coffee to be so close to the seeds without the high heat killing the seeds or reducing seed viability.
But if they can figure out what seeds can withstand high heat, it seem like they have it made, especially because the cups will come with seeds native to whatever region they’re sold in. Sounds like some delicious, deciduous cups of coffee for Californians! I hope the idea will spread to all 50 states.
More coffee cup facts from carryyourcup.org:
* If you buy just one cup of coffee or tea in a disposable cup every day, you’ll end up creating about 23 pounds of waste in one year.
* According to a study conducted by Starbucks and the Alliance for the Environmental Innovation (April 2000), each paper cup manufactured is responsible for 0.24 pounds of CO2 emissions.
* Americans consume 400 million cups of coffee per day or equivalent to 146 billion cups of coffee per year, making the United States the leading consumer of coffee in the world.