Take our reusable cup challenge

Every day 1 billion people drink coffee, but an increasing amount of it is sold in single-use coffee cups creating waste and increasing demand for plastic made from fossil fuels. 

Today (4 October) is ‘No Disposable Cup Day’, so a great opportunity to take our five-day challenge and switch to a reusable cup. Switching to a reusable coffee cup cuts back on plastic waste and reduces the trees cut down to make the cups. It’s a step that has a decent impact and is doable. You’ve got this!

Good reasons to switch to a reusable cup

  • An increasing number of coffee shops charge less if you have your own cup, saving money over time.
  • Most coffee cups cannot be recycled because they are a mixture of paper and plastic. Cutting back on reusable cups means less waste going to landfills.
  • To make coffee cups you need to cut down trees. Fewer disposal cups mean fewer trees cut down.

As usual, the sustainability landscape isn’t always as clear-cut. Reusable coffee cups take more carbon and materials to make than disposable cups, so make sure to use them again and again. It should last for many years.

More and more shops are taking back coffee cups for recycling. Even if you forget your reusable cup, you can still recycle your disposable one.


  • Only 1 in 400 coffee cups gets recycled. This means that over 300 million go to landfill every single day.
  • People in Finland drink more coffee than any other nation consuming 12 kg of coffee a year and 4 cups a day. 2 coffee breaks are a legal requirement for many workers.
  • 65% of coffee is consumed early in the morning.

This step is all about building up a new habit. Set yourself a challenge to remember your cup the next time you leave the house. Once you’ve done that, do it again! Don’t stress if you forget it a few times.

For more steps to help you #ThinkCarbon, sign-up to Giki Zero, your free step-by-step guide to reduce your carbon footprint.