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Starbucks Is Ready To Introduce A New Sustainable Cup

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By Taylor Hodgkins on September 17, 2023 at 3:00 PM EDT

The Starbucks cup has become a symbol of our collective culture. From pop culture ("You've Got Mail," anyone?) to yearly collaborative discussions about its holiday cups, its art has become symbolic.

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pumpkin spice latte
Instagram/ Starbucks
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However, the coffee chain is looking to make a change. In the next 10 years, the legendary store wants to phase out their iconic paper cups in favor of more environmentally-friendly methods.

Starbucks is beginning the process by rewarding customers who are choosing alternative methods already; per the Wisconsin State Journal, the extremely popular coffee stop reportedly gave a customer a dollar off their purchase after they brought in their own cup. The customer reportedly put their cup into a small dish washer upon coming up to the counter.

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Inside Starbucks' Plan For A More Sustainable Future

Starbucks building

The billion-dollar company is reportedly seeking to overhaul their classic paper cups in an effort to become a more sustainable company in an era of strong concern for climate change.

The aforementioned outlet reported that Starbucks believes the change is "the right thing for the environment."

Starbucks' Head of Sustainability, Michael Kobori, explained, "Our vision for the cup of the future-and our Holy Grail, if you will- is that the cup still has the iconic symbol on it. It's just a reusable cup."

Starbucks sees the move as an opportunity to make a significant reduction in its waste, water use, and its carbon emissions, by the beginning of the next decade, the outlet also reports.

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The Company Also Hopes The Move Could Revamp Image


Starbucks also reportedly hopes the pivot to using more sustainable material will translate to its suppliers, including college campuses.

They hope those suppliers will eventually embrace the move, which will eventually entail those store layouts to accompany the changes made to accomplish the outlook.

However, the change will likely be able to come to major fruition unless it's embraced widely, and this includes government regulation.

The Vice President for the World Wildlife Fund's plastic waste and business unit, Erin Simon, told the outlet:

"Not one institution, not one organization, not even one sector can change it on its own."

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Los Angeles lawyer Jon Solorzano described the move as "...turning an aircraft carrier around. Little tiny tweaks that seem insignificant can actually have big operational challenges for an organization." Solorzano's mission is to guide companies in a more sustainable direction by "developing climate-friendly operations and disclosures," per the outlet.

Starbucks Is Also Aiming To Implement Further Measures

Starbucks logo

Ushering their cups into a more sustainable future is not the only kind of effort Starbucks is trying to make.

According to their website, the company is committed to offering more plant-based menu options, and "joined arms with others across industry" to accomplish their longterm vision.

The company has deemed their new plan a "planet positive future."

Starbucks is also making an effort to invest in "regenerative agriculture, reforestation, forest conservation and water replenishment" in the company's supply chain.

They also seek to associate themselves with "more responsible stores, operations, [and] manufacturing and delivery," per

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