Ah coffee. Is there a better-sounding word to wake up to of a morning? We think not. And whilst many of us look forward to our daily (insert coffee order here), what we may not put much thought in, is the impact our regular coffee habits are having on the environment. The good news is that there are some minor tweaks you can make to how you enjoy your coffee that yield big changes when it comes to sustainability. Here are three simple things to be mindful of next time you’re sipping on your beloved cup of java.
1. Opt for reusable cups
Although it’s not always feasible to have your KeepCup handy, using it whenever you can is the first step towards an eco-friendlier coffee order. According to Great Forest Australia, disposable coffee cups make up around 20% of landfill waste. You’d be forgiven for thinking that coffee cups are recyclable because they are mostly made of paper, however they are often lined with a waxy type of plastic called polyethylene which takes years to break down. Another plus-side of opting for a reusable cup? You’d be surprised at how many cafes are now offering discounts for those who do!
2. Look for fairtrade products
‘Fairtrade’ is a word that quite often gets thrown around, but what exactly does it mean and how does it affect sustainability? According to Fairtrade Australia and New Zealand, coffee is known as a highly volatile commodity, with wide price fluctuations year to yea due to weather conditions and disease susceptivity amongst other factors. The Fairtrade Mark shows you that the Fairtrade ingredients in the product have been produced by small-scale farmer organisations or plantations that meet internationally agreed Fairtrade social, economic and environmental standards.
3. Purchase eco-conscious pods
It’s great to see huge coffee companies like Nespresso supporting sustainability with programs that enable you to properly dispose of and recycle your used pods but what we’re most excited to see is the rise of brands like Pod & Parcel paving the way for a more sustainable coffee future. Also compatible with at-home Nespresso machines, this Melbourne-based company offers a range of high quality coffee pods that are entirely biodegradable and compostable (including the packaging). According to Pod & Parcel, their capsules—which are made from plant-base material—breaks down in 90 days and also release up to 75% less C02 during production when compared to aluminium.
Anyone else fancy a cuppa right about now?