Environment, sustainability, efficiency and reusable cup - Part 2

Posted by Chanho Hong on

Environment, sustainability, efficiency and reusable cup - Part 2

From the previous article, the concept of environment, sustainability and efficiency was defined as

'Every single elements around us that are constantly affecting the entire supply chain of coffee, should be as sustainable as possible to reach the minimum level of influences on environment hence the industry moves forward to reach the best efficiency so that the industry ecologies in each stage of origin, transporting, roasting, brewing, selling and even wasting.'


What can we do at a cafe level?

So, let’s talk about what we can do at a cafe/coffee shop level. This is not compulsory, however, it is suggestible.

First of all, minimising the usage of non-recyclable materials is the main option. We are consuming approximately 1 billion disposable cups every year which means we are wasting 2,700,000 cups every day (University of Melbourne, n.d.). For this issue, people used to say “Let’s go with the recyclable cups.” or “Let’s just use reusable cups.” However, in reality, it does not happen because there are a huge demand for the disposable items although people know that they have to take action. To change all of the disposable cups to the recyclable materials, it costs huge, and it destroys some of the supply chain, therefore, it won’t happen. And also it is not feasible that everyone buys a reusable cup and keeps bringing it every time. As we know, a complete change of the market is impossible. However, although the reality is not helping us minimise the usage of disposable items, we still need to step towards this. At least, we should try to find suppliers that offers recyclable items, or suggest suppliers to produce recyclables.

Secondly, we should start thinking of resources. There are a number of wastage made in the cafe such as electricity, water, and gas, also wastage in coffee, food, etc. If we do not cut this down, the constantly produced wastage affects environment hence sustainability. Thus, we should find a way to save those resources as much as we can.


What can we do at a roastery level?

It is very hard to act something at the roastery level because the activities in the roastery are very simple.

However, innovation in developing the productivity of roasting production would help a lot. For example, minimising the interval between the batches will reduce the gas consumption, designing workflow more efficiently will help save some leakages and managing wastage such as using grain pro bags as rubbish bin bag will help a bit.


What can we do at a consumer level?

Consumers are slowly adopting and are starting to act even slower. Thus, the whole industry should do the same campaign of minimising the usage of disposable items and replacing it to recyclable or reusable. Also, it is important to actually start using those products hence increasing the demand so that the supply reacts. This cannot be done by one or a few companies. Thus, it requires industry-leading and responsible companies’ action in order to educate people.

Consequently, this is the time for everyone to take action for our environment, it’s sustainability by improving our efficiency. 

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