Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Keurig: The Dumbest Idea in Coffee. Ever.

What do you see when you look at this photo?

Once upon a time, I saw an unlimited, free supply of coffee at my office. I was even excited there was a fair trade option. I was proud to always make it in a reusable mug, and even more proud when my company started supplying soy milk after I made a request for it.

BUT...according to Keurig's own environmental statement these are:

"petroleum-based" and "The K-Cup package is made up of three main elements -- the cup itself, a filter and an aluminum foil top. The polyethylene coating of the foil - as well as the process of heat-sealing the various elements - makes recycling difficult."

What's more distributing is the home use of these. I see these promoted at Bed Bath & Beyond and other outlets. Is it really that much work to make a cup of coffee? Have we been conditioned to that level of laziness and environmental negligence?

I think of an ad a few years ago promoting plastic single-serve bowls of cereal with plastic spoons, so kids could help themselves while their parents slept in. My sister and I managed just fine with our cinnamon Life cereal in a box which we happily ate while watching The Smurfs.

I hear some declaring they are a treehugger, and are very conscious of paper usage, but we often don't think of all the plastic in our lives, which seems just as egregious, if not worse. I was guilty of this too and thankfully haven't used these for many months.

Certainly, a few moments of coffee enjoyment isn't worth a lifetime in the landfill. Not for this treehugger.


Green Sea Anemone said...

I have a machine at home that uses K-cups, but I purchased the My K-cup accessory thingy that I load with my own coffee. Reusable to the nth degree and I don't waste coffee by making more than I'll consume. Agree that the prepackaged K-cups are just ridiculous, though.

Catherine @ The Vegan Good Life said...

Thanks for the comment. That is so great that you can reuse yours.

In a work setting, I see loads of these single-serve cups going straight into the garbage. Some people use two at a time. All these convenience items come at a price.

I myself drink just one cup of coffee in the morning, and have been making it with a drip coffee maker for years.

Rebecca said...

Two words: French Press. Makes the best coffee in the world, as light or strong as you like it, and no filters to buy either. And it makes great tea and tisanes with loose leaf tea. An added bonus, you can make one or up to 4 or 5 cups, as much or little as you like.

Cate said...

Whaaaat? Do these really exist? Sad.

Funny, I managed just fine with my cinnamon Life in a bowl, too! We must both have just been extraordinarily good at coping.


Catherine @ The Vegan Good Life said...

Rebecca, you know I never thought to make tea with a French press. I love both coffee and tea. At home, I use unbleached filters, but no filters sound even better.

Cate, ah, maybe that's why we turned out so well! (If I do say so myself). :-)