Bamboo coffee cups are growing in popularity but are they really worth it? Below we’ve got 8 great facts before you invest.
For people who are concerned about the problems throwaway coffee cups have on the environment, a reusable coffee cup such as a bamboo coffee mug is a good alternative.
Bamboo has been used for drinking water, juices, teas and other beverages for hundreds of years by people from many cultures.
Bamboo cups are hardy, readily available and easy to make which makes them a cheap alternative.
For environmentally conscious people like us, they are an ideal addition to other reusable products we’ve invested in.
Plus, they can make a great conversation piece.
What Is Bamboo
Bamboo is a giant, woody, hollow-jointed type of grass.
There are hundreds of types which primarily grown and widely cultivated in the tropics.
A sustainable crop, bamboo grows incredibly fast and can grow to be about 30 to 40 feet tall.
Bamboo plants can be grown without the use of dangerous fertilizers and pesticides.
A plant product, bamboo stores carbon and it’s biodegrade.
When the stem of a bamboo plant is cut a new stem quickly grows to replace it.
This enables a single bamboo plant to be harvested time and again.
A perennial evergreen, bamboo stays green all year round and grows every year.
How Bamboo Cups Are Made
Bamboo is an excellent material for making eco friendly cups.
Bamboo cups are made from a combination of bamboo, resin and non-GMO corn starch.
The lid of the bamboo coffee cups are either made from the same materials or silicone.
To manufacture coffee cups out of bamboo corn starch and bamboo fibres are mixed together to make a paste.
The stalk and husk of the bamboo is ground, refined and made into a fibrous pulp. It’s mixed with corn starch resin and a soft dough is created.
A resin with melamine is then added to make it hard, durable, able to withstand high temperatures and ensure food safety.
The dough is the shaped into a cup in a heat press mold. The cups are then sanded, polished, coated and bespoke artwork is added.
Not easily broken even when dropped, bamboo coffee cups can last for years.
Reducing Unnecessary Waste
Purchasing a bamboo reusable coffee cup to get your takeout coffee is a great way to begin reducing the amount of waste you create every day.
There are a variety of types of bamboo coffee cups available for coffee drinkers who are eco conscious.
Although bamboo coffee cups are strong, durable and reusable, they are also biodegradable.
That means they rot and are absorbed into the earth after about a year in the soil.
That’s a lot faster than the more than 50 years normal plastic lined disposable coffee cups take to break down.
That helps to reduce the amount of unnecessary waste sitting in trash dumps.
Most Bamboo Coffee Mugs Are Dishwasher Safe
One of the benefits of using bamboo coffee cups is that most of them are dishwasher safe.
The resin used to manufacture the bamboo reusable coffee cup makes them strong enough to handle the heat they have to endure in dishwashers.
This allows people to use them all day long and at the end of the day, simply put them into the dishwasher to get clean without any hassle.
However, because not all of the bamboo mugs are designed to be put into the dishwasher, buyers should check the bottom of the cups before purchasing them.
That is where the manufacturers usually indicate if the bamboo mug is dishwasher safe.
Don’t Put The Bamboo Eco Mug In The Microwave Oven
Most bamboo eco mugs are not designed to be placed in the microwave oven.
The intensity of the heat the microwave oven produces is too great for most of the cups.
On the packaging or the bottom of the bamboo mugs there is usually a manufacturer’s warning that says ‘Do Not Microwave’.
If the bamboo mugs are placed in the microwave oven, hot spots and cracking may occur that will damage the cups.
That’s because it may have a “melamine binder” that can soften and cause the cup to warp.
Intense heat can also cause the bamboo fibres to degrade and shorten the life of the bamboo mug.
Bamboo Cups Can Save you Money
One of the greatest advantages is that a reusable cup can actually help you save money.
At Starbucks, for example, you can get a 10 cents discount every time you have your coffee placed in your own reusable cup.
Other coffee shops offer discounts as much as 50 cents a serving for people with reusable cups.
If you purchase a cup of coffee every day, the savings can add up to as much as $180 (approx. £150) a year or more.
That means the cup will quickly pay for itself and actually put money back into your pocket especially if you regularly use one.
Most disposable coffee cups are made from paper.
Meeting the need for tens of billions of disposable coffee cups each year requires cutting down are large number of trees.
That means getting your daily fix of coffee to go at your favourite coffee shop or café actually contributes to the worldwide deforestation problem.
For environmentally conscious people, purchasing reusable bamboo coffee cups is a great choice.
While the trees cut down to make disposable cups take decades to regrow, the fast growing bamboo plant that is cut to make the cups will quickly return and be 10 or more feet tall within a year.
Keeps Billions Of Cups Out Of Landfills
Each year, countless billions of plastic lined, paper disposable coffee cups are tossed into landfills.
There they sit for decades before they begin to break down.
Its second only to plastic bottles.
If a growing percentage of regular coffee drinkers switch from paper, single use disposable coffee cups to reusable bamboo cups, it can help to significantly reduce the number of coffee cups in overflowing landfills around the world.
This single act can help to save money, trees and the environment one cup of coffee at a time.