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Starbucks Reusable Cup

Starbucks is selling reusable plastic cups in its stores in the U.S. and Canada.

Starbucks is charging $1 for the cup, which will hold tall or grande drinks, and entitle the user to a 10 percent discount. Nearly 2 percent of its beverages are served in their customers’ own cups, a number it hopes to raise to 5 percent by 2015.

An important component of our overall waste reduction strategy is the use of reusable cups. When Starbucks outlined this strategy in 2008, they set a goal to serve 25 percent of all beverages in reusable cups by 2015. Whether it is in personal tumblers that their customers carry in or the serve ware they use in their stores. Starbucks has advocated for improved recycling infrastructure and using post-consumer fiber in their packaging.

Since 1985, Starbucks has been rewarded their customers with a discount when they bring in personal tumblers. To promote this practice, they have included special campaigns in April of 2010 and 2011, offering customers who brought their tumblers into our stores a free brewed coffee. In 2011, customers brought their own tumblers into Starbucks stores more than 34 million times, saving more than 1.5 million pounds of paper from landfills.

While Starbucks has seen a 55 percent increase in personal tumbler use over the past three years, they have experienced challenges in consistently executing and tracking our their serve ware use in stores. Because of these challenges and the fact the majority of beverages are consumed outside of our stores, they are resetting their goal to focus on increasing the use of personal tumblers. Our new goal is to serve 5 percent of all beverages made in our stores in personal tumblers.

By producing a plastic reusable cup and offering a 10 percent discount they hope to cut down on the landfill waste and continue to promote themselves as a green corporation.

Image: Starbucks

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