Australians use more than a billion disposable coffee cups each year, equivalent to approximately 2.7 million coffee cups per day, with roughly 92% ending up in landfills. But specialty coffee roaster Jasper Coffee has introduced the country’s first 100% plastic-free, fully recyclable single-use coffee cup and lid, amidst a year that has seen a surge in disposable plastic waste due to COVID-19.
After extensive research into the recycling process of takeaway coffee cups and the use of polyethylene liners (PE), the thin film of plastic that lines the disposable coffee cups, Melbourne-based roaster Jasper Coffee discovered an alternative material that was 100% recyclable, compostable and plastic free manufactured by Finnish paper mill Kotkamills.
The B2B company based in Kotka, a town east of Helsinki, developed the patented cardboard with a water-based dispersion coated barrier, creating a water-impervious inner layer. Made from local raw materials sourced from sustainably managed forests, the 100% plastic-free takeaway cup has all the heat-retaining attributes of standard takeaway coffee cups, but contains none of the harmful plastics or waxes nor does it change the taste of the coffee.
The plastic-free cup and lid will also decompose in domestic and industrial facilities in just over 105 days and is designed to be recycled along with normal paper and cardboard paper. Traditional coffee cups with PE lining are usually dumped in landfills as most Australian recycling sites aren’t equipped with proper technology to remove the plastic layer, so the Jasper Coffee plastic-free takeaway cup is a game changer.
“As an Australian owned business, we are conscious of the fragile thin layer of soil we have on our continent and the need to keep the soil healthy in order to provide healthy food for healthy people,” says Jasper Coffee founder, Wells Trenfield.
“The quality of soil, air, water and viability of people are the essence of this sustainability. That is why we have consciously considered these aspects in our business.”
Upon discovering the innovative product, it took the company 18 months and the assistance of their Indonesian-based manufacturer, Glopac, and Melbourne distributor, Aberdeen Paper, to bring the finished cup to Australia.
Launching in eight coffee shops across Victoria and Queensland, Jasper Coffee’s 100% plastic-free takeaway coffee cups may help to reduce Australia’s growing plastic waste problem.
The plastic-free takeaway coffee cup is a natural progression in the company’s sustainability journey. A certified B Corp, the specialty roaster roasts and blends the highest quality single origin organically grown, fair-trade coffee beans. Its products are certified by Australian Certified Organic. In 2009, Jasper Coffee also became a 100% carbon neutral coffee company.
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All images via Jasper Coffee.