A campaign organized by students and supported by U of G’s Hospitality Services aims to encourage the use of reusable coffee mugs on campus through customer incentives and an advertising campaign to reduce single-use cups.
About 25,000 cups of coffee are sold each day on campus, mostly in disposable cups.
“This is problematic due to the resources required to manufacture and transport these single-use products, and their significant contribution to landfill waste,” says Alison Tindall, a student co-leader of the campaign.
Tindall, along with students Tasia Wong, Monique Chan and Marion Davies, partnered with the Feeding 9 Billion program started by Evan Fraser, a U of G geography professor. The program aims to improve environmental sustainability and food security locally and globally.
The campaign includes:
- A new stamp-card program rewarding purchases of hot drinks in reusable mugs;
- Convenient public sinks for washing mugs;
- Posters explaining the environmental effects of consumers’ choices and savings from reusable mugs (Hospitality Services charges any hot drink as a “small” if purchased in a reusable mug, which saves $150 a year for the average customer); and
- Cashiers’ verbal recognition of reusable mugs.
Hospitality Services plans to integrate mugs into U of G’s existing “iamreusable” program, which allows patrons to borrow reusable dishes for to-go meals.