Thursday, May 12, 2016

Too Many K-cups in the Landfill

Keurig coffee makers are really popular right now.  They have evolved from a basic single serve machine to many fancy styles and colors.  Other companies have followed all in search of a perfect cup of coffee.  It was supposed to make it easy to get coffeehouse coffee at home.  I don't think it's working because I was told the line at Starbucks was 15 deep yesterday morning.

Long before Keurig's became popular I saw one at the Goodwill store.  I bought it.  During that time, you could find K-cups at the bent and dent stores for $2.00 a box.  I liked it for convenience but never really liked the coffee.  It was too strong for me.  As Keurig became more popular, the selection of drinks to be made in them increased.  Now you can buy coffee, tea, soup, hot chocolate in several varieties and flavors.

My recent purchases from Country Values Bent and Dent store. Love that place.

It always bothered me that billions of plastic K-cups were going into the landfill.  I read that Keurig sold nine billion K-cups in 2015,  Apparently Keurig is finally addressing the problem and after ten years are coming up with a recyclable cup.  The problem is that all components of the cup have to be separated.  That means the foil, filter, coffee grounds and plastic cup have to be taken apart. I can't believe people will actually take the time to do this.  I have found organic bio-degradable cups put out by another company.  That made me feel somewhat better that others are worried about the problem too.  In order to cut down on my contribution to the problem, I also bought several of the little pods which hold your own coffee.  They were fine, but a pain to remove the grounds and clean.  I had to cut the foil off the used cup and wash out the cup to use again with a small disk purchased for this purpose.  The coffee tasted funny.  I think the old oils couldn't be removed completely from the little paper filter inside the plastic cup, but it was better than throwing them away after every use.

Recently I discovered a product by Melitta.  It consists of a plastic sleeve, a collar, a paper filter and a disk to cover it.  You use your own coffee and can make it to the strength you like.

You can see I got this product for $2 on a clearance rack.  It comes with two reusable cups, which are called JavaJig cups, and a starter pack of 30 filters.

Instructions for assembling the cup.

I kind of like it.  I can compost the paper filter without guilt and don't have to wash grounds out of the permanent filters.  Hopefully this product hasn't been discontinued and that is the reason I found it in the clearance section.

I still use my Bunn coffee maker most of the time, but when I want a quick cup of coffee I use the Keurig.  It is convenient, but I'm just trying to be smart with how many plastic cups I throw away.  

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