Best Choices For Sustainable Coffee Mugs

sustainable, reusable coffee mugs

When you’re trying to be more environmentally conscious it helps to buy products that you know you can use more than one time. Keeping in mind what products you can and cannot recycle is important. If you’re the kind of person who likes to frequently drink coffee on the go, you may think that your paper travel mug is recyclable. Unfortunately, that is not the case.

Paper travel mugs, the type offered by most coffee chains, are not recyclable because they have a thin plastic coating that prevents the cup from absorbing the coffee and getting soggy. That is not a good thing for the environment. If you want to truly help the environment while feeding your coffee addiction then the thing you need to have is a reusable travel mug.

Benefits of a Sustainable Coffee Mug

A sustainable coffee mug is a great thing to have because it is a small, but effective, way to minimize your waste footprint on the world.

Another benefit, depending on where you like to get your coffee, is that you can get a discount when you bring your own coffee cup. This may not work in all major chains, but it is certainly worth asking about, especially at your local coffee shop.

KeepCup Toughened Glass & Natural Cork Reusable Coffee Cup

A travel mug does not have to be aesthetically pleasing in order to be worthwhile, but it is certainly a bonus. The KeepCup reusable coffee cup is so pretty that it has actually inspired some inferior knock-offs. However, the knock-offs are not of the same quality.

This mug features a natural cork grip to prevent burns. It has a tempered glass body with a white non-spill lid. It is a fantastic eco-friendly travel companion.

Joco Glass Eco-Friendly Travel Mug

This tempered glass travel mug from Joco also has Instagram-worthy aesthetics. While there is nothing to confirm this, allegedly the design of the body of the mug makes for easier mixing of creamer and sweeteners. Like the option from KeepCup, it features a completely transparent glass body, with a silicone grip and a top with matching colors.

HereandNowPottery Large Reusable Mug

If you want a truly unique travel mug then it does not get more unique than these incredible handmade mugs from HereandNowPottery. Each mug is completely handmade and fired with a lead-free white glaze to keep your coffee-drinking experience a safe one.

These mugs are eco-friendly thanks to the fact that they leave zero waste behind. The company even uses an energy-efficient kiln that heats the ceramic material up to a stone quality. This prevents the mug from being able to absorb moisture from the coffee. Not only does it keep your coffee warm for long periods of time, but it looks beautiful too.

Yeti Rambler

If you are looking for a mug that can hold up to 20 ounces and get you through your morning routine, this option from Yeti is what you are looking for. It features a rather plain, no-nonsense design. But don’t let that put you off. This is a workhorse coffee mug made of stainless steel. While the lid does not prevent spills or leaks, it is magnetic, meaning it will lock tightly to the body of the mug. This mug will keep your drinks hot or cold for hours thanks to its double-walled insulation. Best of all, if it should become damaged, there’s a five-year warranty!

bioGo Cup

Sustainable replacements for common products often come with compromises. Fortunately, the bioGo Cup does not come with such compromises. This cup uses rice husk fiber, ditching the typical glass and stainless steel designs. One thing that it has that many travel coffee cups don’t have is a flip function on the lid. It is not spill or leak-proof, but it does offer a further degree of protection than many of the lids used on other travel mugs.

BruMate Toddy

One of the biggest drawbacks to most travel mugs is that they usually do not have leak or spillproof lids. That feature alone would make the BruMate Toddy easy to recommend, but there is thankfully much more going on with this mug. It features a handle, which is always a plus. The handle is placed higher up on the body so that it is easy to place in most cupholders.

Its body is specially insulated to keep your drinks hot or cold for up to seven hours. It is also dishwasher safe, which is not found in a tremendous number of reusable mugs.

Contigo Autoseal Travel Mug

This travel mug features a modern design that will keep your drinks hot or cold for up to 5 hours. It has a durable, stainless steel body and comes in a few different colors. It fits most cupholders, and best of all features an autoseal lid, which makes it spill-proof.

MiiR TruEnamel Camp Cup

If you truly want a sustainable travel mug then it does not get much better than a mug from a company that has been certified as Climate Neutral. This stylish and ergonomic mug may not be dishwasher safe, but it makes up for that with its lifetime warranty. On top of that, it features an ergonomic design that works with many cup holders. Its glass enamel design carries no odors from prior drinks.

Circular & Co. Travel Mug

If you want evidence that a travel mug is reusable, then perhaps the best evidence for this offering from Circular & Co. is its own existence. Not only is this travel mug recyclable, but it’s also made up of recycled coffee cups. It, admittedly, only keeps your drinks hot or cold for roughly 90 minutes. However, it is guaranteed to last up to ten years and features a fully leakproof lid.

Stojo Collapsible Coffee Cup

One of the most frustrating things about carrying around a travel cup is the amount of space the cup takes up when you are done drinking from it. This unique, collapsible travel cup from Stojo solves that problem beautifully. With an integrated straw, you can sip to your heart’s content while you are on the go. When you are finished you can simply collapse the cup to a size that fits perfectly in a purse or even in your pocket.

 

How to Find Sustainable Coffee Shops

sustainable coffee shop

People are looking for all the ways they can reduce their carbon footprint: driving electric cars; buying alternative home fuel. One small way to lower one’s carbon footprint gaining popularity is seeking out sustainable coffee shops.

A sustainable coffee shop goes beyond being a coffee shop that recycles its garbage. They are committed to keeping their waste and carbon footprint very low. If you’re trying to find a coffee shop committed to sustainability then here is everything you need to know from what to look for in such a shop to how to find one.

What a Sustainable Coffee Shop Does

A sustainable coffee shop will engage in practices that set it apart from regular coffee shops. Here are some of the practices that you can immediately notice about a coffee shop to tell you whether or not it is running on a sustainable model.

An Emphasis on Recyclable Materials

One of the most obvious signs of a sustainable coffee shop will be a reliance on recyclable materials. So many coffee shops utilize coffee cups that are made of paper, save for a thin veneer of plastic that coats the cup’s interior. A sustainable coffee shop would be using totally recyclable coffee cups.

Instead of plastic trays and cutlery, they may place an emphasis on cardboard trays or wooden cutlery. They would also be using absolutely no Styrofoam as it is a non-recyclable material. You will likely not find any plastic drink stirrers either. For stirring you’ll find they use good old-fashioned metal or wood spoons.

Contributing to Recycling Efforts

One of the easiest things to notice about a coffee shop to determine whether or not it is sustainable is if there is an active emphasis on recycling. It does not simply mean that there are recycling bins, but that they are giving clear instructions on what items you have in your order that can be placed in those bins.

Bring Your Own Cup Incentives

One mark of a coffee shop that is dedicated to the ideals of sustainability is the BYOC (bring your own cup) incentive. There are coffee shops that offer a discount to customers willing to bring in their own coffee cups rather than use the disposable options from the shop. This practice not only saves you a little bit of money, but also water.

Do They Use Sustainable Coffee Brands?

There are numerous brands of coffee on the market that have made a commitment to being sustainable and environmentally friendly. You may have to ask around at different shops to purchase their supply from sustainable brands.

What makes coffee sustainable?

A coffee brand is sustainable if it makes the living conditions for the environment and people who cultivate it better. The sad truth of the coffee industry is that many of the farmers who grow and cultivate coffee face poverty. Buying from brands that pay farms fairly is an important marker of sustainability.

Coffee brands that are made from coffee farmed on land that promotes biodiversity are also important. Most coffee farms tend to rely on pesticides and other chemicals that can harm local wildlife. A sustainable farm finds concessions to promote biodiversity so that the growing of coffee beans is a process that does no harm.

Another mark of a sustainable coffee shop is whether or not they place emphasis on using paperless receipts. If they participate in compost programs in your area is also a fantastic sustainable move they will likely make. They will also use either reduced lighting or LED-based lighting to cut back on energy use and promote energy efficiency. There are even coffee makers and espresso machines that are designed to use minimal amounts of energy.

How do I find a sustainable coffee shop?

As with most things these days, if you want to find something you usually want to start with the internet. Coffee shops with sustainability as a point of conduct will typically advertise themselves as such. You can also call around to various coffee shops in your area and ask them directly if they are sustainable. However, this is a benefit that is typically only available to those who live in big cities.

The sad truth is that if you live in a small town, then your local coffee shop is still your best source of coffee. Driving a considerable distance to find a coffee shop that is sustainable burns more gas, which goes against the entire point of sustainability. However, if you are going on vacation or traveling for some other reason you can always have sustainable shops marked for your destinations.

There are also online resources that can help you find sustainable coffee shops. These lists are always updated as shops open and close, so you can stay up to date on the locations you may want to visit. Social media is also a great, real-time solution to finding sustainable coffee shop options.

What You Can Do

If you do not have any sustainable coffee shop options in your area, you may feel somewhat defeated on the subject. That does not mean that you should give up. If you don’t mind stirring the (coffee) pot a little bit, then you can start asking your local coffee shop what they do to be sustainable. Use it as a conversation starter. Make suggestions. If your local shop does not have a “bring your own cup” incentive, then suggest one.

The most important thing you can do is get the word about sustainability and what it can do for the planet, and how even your morning cup of coffee plays a part. The more that people learn about sustainable coffee, the more likely they will be to ask for it in their local coffee shop.

5 Most Common Eco-Friendly Products for Everyday Use

A family using eco-friendly products

Global warming is increasing, and the circumstances surrounding it are also getting worse and worse. According to the UN landmark report, it’s the “code red for humanity” because of frequent and intense heat waves and rising sea levels. Still, when it comes to climatic changes, the majority of end-users, especially the older generations, put their money where their mouth is. Fortunately, that’s not the case with millennials, as 68 percent of them prefer eco-friendly products. If you’re concerned about global warming, then you’ve come to the right place. We’ve compiled a list of the best and most common eco-friendly products that you can buy for everyday use. Let’s get started.

Rechargeable Batteries

Batteries have become essential household items. Yet, a range of different chemicals are used to make batteries, and most of them are toxic. Not only are these chemicals harmful to the soil, but they can also cause water and air pollution. Consider using rechargeable batteries to keep them from landfills by prolonging their usage. You might need to pay more for rechargeable batteries, but in the long run, you’ll be able to save a lot by helping the environment at the same time.

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Eco-Friendly Toothbrush

BPA (Bisphenol-A) can cause infertility, and it’s usually found in plastic. You can now easily find toothbrushes with BPA-free soft bristles and handles made of bamboo. These toothbrushes also have plant-based packaging, and they can easily last as long as traditional plastic-made toothbrushes do. Not only do these toothbrushes help you play your part to save the planet, but they also keep you from medical conditions caused by BPA.

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Reusable Grocery Bags

We use about 500 billion to one trillion plastic bags across the globe every year. Carrying a reusable shopping bag is an easy way to help create a sustainable society. It’s important to note that some malls and big grocery stores have already stopped offering plastic bags to discourage their use. The trending reusable grocery bags such as Tote bags also allows you to stay fashionable. 

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E-Reader

If you’re an avid book reader and a fan of paperback, then you might be negatively affecting the environment. You can eliminate this possibility by getting an e-reader. Kindle is one of the most popular e-readers available in the market, and it’ll come in handy if you frequently buy new books. It allows you to buy any book you want whether you’re interested in the best books about money or on any other subject. Most importantly, you won’t be harming trees this way. 

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Organic Dish Towels

Instead of using paper towels, you can now opt for 100 percent organic dish towels made of cotton. You can wash them multiple times by throwing them in your washing machine as well, just like any other cloth, to reuse them again. 

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Final Words

There are many other common eco-friendly products out there as well to replace your everyday items. These are the most common ones to get you started. You can start using these products right now on a daily basis to play your part in conserving the environment. 

You may also check 5 Best Green Products for Everyday Use!

3 Solar Gadgets That Will Make Your Life Easier

A phone charging on a solar-powered battery

Solar power is more accessible than ever, without the need for installing huge, expensive panels. Lots of gadgets now have solar panels built into them so you can solar charge them when you’re out and about (and away from power outlets), save on electricity bills, and enjoy using a sustainable energy source. Plus, they’re a life-saver when the power goes down or in the event of a natural disaster.

They’re also a great way to simplify your life. Everyone in the family from kids to seniors can benefit from having solar gadgets on hand.

Top Three Solar-Powered Gadgets That Can Simplify Your Life

1. ABFOCE Solar Bluetooth Speaker

Whether you’re camping, spending a day at the beach, or just enjoying your backyard, a solar Bluetooth speaker helps you keep the music going no matter what. ABFOCE’s Bluetooth speaker comes with a built-in solar panel that gathers enough juice in 10 minutes to provide a half hour of playtime. Another cool feature is that it also functions as a battery bank you can use to power up your phone or other mobile devices.

2. Goal Zero Torch 250 Flashlight

A good flashlight is a must for your home, but it’s useless if it isn’t powered up or you don’t have batteries for it. A solar-powered flashlight, such as the Goal Zero Torch 250 Flashlight, is a good way to make sure you have a flashlight that is ready to go when you need it. When fully charged, it can run for 48 hours, and it has three modes to choose from the flashlight, floodlight, or red light for emergencies. Like the Bluetooth speaker, this gadget also doubles as a battery that can charge up a smartphone—just use the built-in USB plug.

3. Lattis Ellipse Keyless Smart Solar Bike Lock

Bike riders of all ages will love this solar-powered bike lock made by Lattis. It stops thieves from stealing your bike by sending an alert to your smartphone through Bluetooth when someone attempts to tamper with the lock. Plus, it’s a breeze to unlock it. You simply hold your smartphone near it and it opens automatically. You can also use a touchpad to enter your personal code.

Key Takeaway

Solar-powered gadgets are here and they are easy to use for the entire family and offer a ton of money-saving and environmentally friendly benefits.

Related Reading: Solar Panels: Great for you pocket and the environment