Starbucks Hopes to Encourage More Customers to Shift to Using Reusable Cups by the End of Next Year

published Mar 17, 2022
We independently select these products—if you buy from one of our links, we may earn a commission. All prices were accurate at the time of publishing.
Barista pouring cream into Starbucks coffee cup.
Credit: Courtesy of Starbucks

While Starbucks is known for changing up its menu, the famous coffeehouse chain may also soon be known for changing up how that menu is served.

In its latest move to make the world a better place (one cold foam latte at a time), the coffee giant is planning to give customers options to not use the iconic hot drink paper cups and cold drink clear plastic cups — which means less waste for the company and its customers (and that you can still look forward to those famous holiday cups!) .

“Our cup is ubiquitous, and we love that,” said Michael Kobori, Starbucks chief sustainability officer in an article on CNN Business. “But it is also this ubiquitous symbol of a throwaway society.”

Although these logo-emblazoned cups look amazing in your hand (after all, they’re carrying your favorite Pink Drink or Cake Batter Frappuccino), there’s one place they don’t look so great: the landfill.

The best solution? “Eliminating the disposable cup,” Kobori said. He called that option “the holy grail.”

There’s a goal in mind. By 2025, every Starbucks customer will be able to either use their own mug or borrow a ceramic or reusable to-go mug from their local Starbucks (there’s a borrow-a-mug program on the table that requires a deposit). By the end of next year, they’re also hoping to allow customers to use their own mugs at every Starbucks in the U.S. and Canada, even if they order ahead or use the drive-thru.

These changes don’t mean you won’t see any paper or plastic products in the cafés. Instead, this decision just gives customers choices. And as Starbucks is famous for its customizable menu (and even the occasional off-the-menu secret drink blends), this is one step closer to choosing a better Earth. And in line with the recent Feel the Good Vibes campaign, that just feels good.