Lagunitas Brewing Co. and Dave Matthews Band Summer Tour among eco innovators embracing Steelys as alternative to the billions of disposable cups trashed each year
Submitted by: Steelys Drinkware / Eco Imprints
Posted: Jun 05, 2013 – 08:00 AM EST
SAN FRANCISCO, Jun. 05 /CSRwire/ - Summer event & music festival season presents a powerful opportunity to reduce waste – one single-use disposable cup at a time – as a rugged new category of reusable stainless steel cups advances the movement toward more sustainable events and consumption patterns.
Steelys Drinkware, a pioneering wholesale supplier of custom zero waste cups and bottles, has just introduced a versatile new double-wall-insulated stainless steel pint cup that can be reused more than 10,000 times, diverting landfill waste with each reuse. It’s the latest in a line of stylish reusable steel beverage containers that the San Francisco company has produced for eco-minded beverage companies like Lagunitas Brewing Co., and event producers like the Dave Matthews Band Summer Music Tour.
“Our analysis indicates that more than 100 billion disposable cups are sent to landfills in the U.S. each year. That’s enough cup trash to circle the globe a mind-blowing 1,746 times,” said Steelys Drinkware founder John Borg. “We need to change the disposable mentality that’s engrained in our culture. When 300 million people toss cups in the trash daily it adds up to devastating impacts on resources and the environment.”
Cold beverages served during large summer gatherings create an annual spike in single-use cup waste. Event greening practices such as sorting and composting trash and offering organic food options are increasingly common, but reusable steel cups are the latest solution for reducing event waste and overcoming problems posed by other beverage service alternatives.
Glassware is typically too fragile to use at events. Compostable PLA cups can melt in high summer heat. Single-use plastic cups often can’t be recycled — and even when they are, the reclamation process uses large amounts of water and energy. “The best way to minimize impacts is by reusing what has already been made. Looking at water use, energy use, materials use and solid waste impacts over time, nothing compares to stainless steel cups due to their durability,” says Michael Siminitus, founder of Waste Busters, an event greening company based in Sebastopol, CA.
Steelys business model is to drive change by targeting influential bulk buyers who would otherwise source only disposable cups. Since 2011, the company has made over 65,000 custom-branded steel cups that have been distributed or resold by events, beverage companies, food service organizations, and retailers.
Steelys teamed up with Petaluma, CA-based Lagunitas Brewing two years ago to create the craft beer industry’s first steel pint cup. Rugged, stackable, lightweight, and virtually unbreakable, the 18/8 grade steel cups are electro-polished just like kegs to provide a clean taste with no metallic flavor. This week Lagunitas will receive the first shipment of Steelys’ exclusive new double-wall stainless cup, designed to emulate the feel of a classic pub pint glass, but with an extra layer of metal for superior strength and insulation.
“We’re always searching for ways to minimize waste at events and festivals, so finding an alternative to throw-away plastic cups seemed like a no brainer,” said Ron Lindenbusch, CMO for Lagunitas. “We’re willing to try new things if we think it can make a difference and meet our high standards. It’s great to see more events and companies give beer drinkers the chance to embrace reusable steel cups.”
Steelys cups have been produced this summer for the Dave Matthews Band national tour, the Lightning in a Bottle Festival in Temecula, CA, and the Bonnaro Music and Arts Festival in Manchester, TN. They have also been used — and reused — at eco-focused events throughout Northern California, including the Health & Harmony Festival in Santa Rosa, the Gaia Festival in Laytonville, and the High Sierra Music Festival in Quincy, where upwards of 100,000 beverages can be served over a 4-day period.
“Consumption of disposable plastic cups has spiraled out of control,” said Dianna Cohen, co-founder of the Plastic Pollution Coalition, a global alliance working towards a world free of plastic pollution and its toxic impacts. “The trend towards reusable steel cups and containers is an important development in source reduction and waste diversion that can make a real impact.”
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