SAN DIEGO, US – The unofficial “heads of state” of the coffee world met in Seattle this past weekend for the Specialty Coffee Association of America (SCAA) Expo, the world’s largest coffee conference.
Joining them was Drew Beal, CEO of Kill the Cup, a 501(c)(3) environmental nonprofit social enterprise that has a solution for the 158 million paper coffee cups that are used in America each day. Beal challenged the world’s coffee leaders to take the Earth Day Pledge to carry a reusable cup on April 22.
In an effort to raise awareness amongst coffee drinkers this Earth Day, Kill the Cup is challenging 22,000 people to take the Earth Day Pledge to carry a reusable cup on April 22.
Participants can sign the pledge by visiting KillTheCup.com and entering their email address. Reminders will be sent out in the days leading up to Earth Day, April 22.
“We are making it fun for people to bring their own cup,” says Beal, who leads the San Diego-based organization that implements grassroots campaigns focused on reducing consumer waste.
This weekend, Beal met with Samantha Veide, chair of the SCAA Sustainability Council, which works to drive the SCAA’s position on sustainable coffee, influence industry practices, and execute
initiatives that support those positions.
“As an industry we need to constantly explore ways to reduce our environmental impact,” says Veide. “We are excited to explore ways to work with Beal and his organization to bring the sustainability message of the reusable movement to the cafe community and consumers.”
Entering into its second year of operations, Kill The Cup is a nationwide environmental initiative on college campuses.
This past October, Kill the Cup held its inaugural University Challenge at eight schools across the United States. Kill the Cup hopes to have 24 schools participate in the fall 2015 program.
The typical Kill the Cup campaign works like this: individuals upload coffee selfies with a reusable cup for a chance to win gift cards or other prizes. People that check-in to a sponsored location receive additional entries for weekly and grand prize raffles.
“The result is triple bottom line,” explains Beal. “Less waste from paper cups, more excitement around sustainability and improved financial performance for partner organizations.”
As part of the Earth Day Pledge, participants are encouraged to donate to Kill the Cup to help the organization scale out of the startup phase.
“From one dollar to one thousand dollars, any contribution amount will help us grow our environmental and social impact,” said Beal, who volunteered 15 hours to offset costs to attend the Expo, and will do so again at the Sustainable Brands Conference in San Diego this June.
Sticking with the “22” theme, Kill the Cup has a fundraising goal of $22,000 by April 22.