When you are a true coffee addict, it is no surprise that you will have your easy-to-use coffee brewing machine right there on your kitchen slab or one of the tables at home. Making a fine, aromatic cup of coffee every morning is just what most us need to for that perfect start to our busy day ahead.
As far ‘easy’ is concerned, the first option that comes to our mind are the Keurig K-Cups coffee brewers that have made our lives all too simpler since the late 90s. Keeping into consideration the fast-paced modern-day world we are part of, the single-serve Keurig coffee brewers come in quite handy when it’s about getting a nice cup of coffee while saving time and effort simultaneously.
Well guess what, those K-cups are still being manufactured and consumed by coffee drinkers all around the globe. So what can we really do to make a difference to our environment and to save our planet? Having said that, the flip side of these K-Cups is the impact they have on the environment once they are consumed and thrown away. Since these cups are neither recyclable nor biodegradable, they have drastic effects on our planet. In 2014, Keurig sold over 9 billion K-cups worldwide – something that even John Sylvan, the inventor of K-Cups, regrets to this date.
Let’s have a look at some of the environment-friendly ways to enjoy your favorite coffee using K-cups:
Switching to Recyclable K-Cups
The easiest way to reduce the negative impact of a product is to eliminate the use of it – or replace it with something better. To reduce the environmental hazards of Keurig K-Cups, you can now find other options in the recyclable cups category, like the Dean’s Beans or the Crazy Cups that sell recyclable K-Cups. However, these products need to be disassembled by the user after consumption in order for them to have a recyclable form.
Switching to Reusable K-Cup Filters
If you haven’t been using a reusable k-cup filter up till now, well, you should revisit that decision of yours. Even though Keurig does not manufacture reusable filters for its currently selling 2.0 model version, you can still use reusable filters from other brands – like the Eko-Brew reusable filter. These products will cost you between $9 and $16 (depending on the build quality) and if they are compatible with your machine, they will decrease the number of used filters that you used to throw away previously.
Compostable Coffee Pods
Although not 100% waste-free, the New Hampshire Coffee brand came up with an innovation in the coffee pods niche that are 100% compostable. With the purchase of a Pod Holster, you can use them in the Keurig coffee maker as well. Once consumed, you throw it away in the compost and that is pretty much it. However, the Pod Holster might not be compatible with all coffee makers, so it would be a nice idea to check the compatibility before you buy these pods.
Choosing a Biodegradable Cup
Another smart way to contribute in saving our planet would be to replace your existing K-Cups with compostable and biodegradable cups that will reduce the adverse effects on our environment. Brands like Cameron’s Coffee have their EcoPods that are easily compostable at a commercial level. In addition, they also claim that their product is compostable at home compost as well.
Having said that, it is imperative to note that there are a lot of brands these days that do claim that they are biodegradable or compostable – in reality, they are not or might take too long to compost.
Use French Press Coffee Instead
If you are okay with putting in a little more time and effort to your single-serve coffee, then you can use the French Press coffee maker instead of a Keurig single-serve. Yes, you might miss the ease of just pressing a button and having your cup of Joe ready within seconds – the French Press mechanism isn’t too hard either. All you have to do is to pour in your favorite coffee, add hot water and wait for a few minutes (3-4). After that, simply press the plunger down and your cup of coffee is ready to be served!
Moreover, you can also use an AeroPress where you have to simply place a paper filter, add ground coffee, add hot water over the grounds and leave for a few seconds to infuse. Then press the plunger down gently for around 30 seconds and your coffee is ready.
Or, You Can Just Wait For Keurig To Go Recyclable
Keurig's CEO said recently that the K-Cup will soon be recyclable as part of their ongoing efforts to become a more green company. We can hope that this will be true but reducing waste is always better than simply recovering it through recycling!