BYO Cup – are we preaching to the converted?

Bring your own stainless steel mug
Bring your own stainless steel mug


I don’t generally have a coffee on my journey to work.  But the other day there was still coffee in the cafetiere and no time left, so I poured it into my stainless steel cup which falls somewhere between a “coffee to go” cup and a Thermos, and took it with me.  By the time I was sat on the train about an hour later it was still piping hot.

Maybe it was because I happened to be drinking a coffee that day that I took more notice of the others on the train, because I had not particularly noticed before.  In just one carriage, and it was not particularly busy, I counted 20 people sipping cups of tea or coffee.  Now given all the recent media coverage, Hugh’s War on Waste campaign and even articles in the Metro I was reading on the train that morning, you might think awareness of the coffee cup waste issue would be up a bit. So how many do you think had their drink in a reusable cup or flask?

Me.  Just me.

So it made me think.  Is the message actually getting out there?  And if it is, why don’t people care?  Are those of us trying to reduce our waste just sharing our disgust at the rubbish produced amongst ourselves? Are we preaching to the converted?

I truly hope not, and that little by little, the number of people thinking about such issues is increasing.   I was certainly not expecting to see no disposable cups, but 19 out of 20, now that really is rubbish.


An estimated 2.5 million paper cups are thrown away in the UK each year – that’s almost 5,000 a minute.  Less than 1% are recycled. (






3 thoughts on “BYO Cup – are we preaching to the converted?

  1. Good point. I have been more open about sharing my observations on these issues, as when I first started the ZW Journey, I just talked amongst our trusty community. We do need to use our voice to bring awareness. How sad you saw such a tiny amount of reusable cups! Makes me shake my head!


  2. Fully agree! I think a lot of our discussion is preaching to the converted, because they’re the ones that want to listen, but I don’t think it’s a bad thing as nice to know you’re not alone. I think the message is filtering out into the general conversation bit by bit, look how the microbeads thing has grown for example. It just takes a lot longer than we would like. If one person on your train noticed and replaced their mug, and so on, then that can only be a good thing.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m with you. I never take coffee to go, I just drink it at home, but if I did I’d bring my portable mug. I don’t understand people who haven’t made this change yet. Its not at all hard. I feel the same about plastic grocery bags vs. bring your own. I’m not sure why the plastic ones still exist?

    Liked by 1 person

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s