We go green with our makeup, with our body products, and even our clothes, but at times, it seems like the products we consume the most—literally, our food and drinks—are still behind on the environmentally-friendly train. Until recently, that is.
If you’ve been looking for an on-the-go option for your morning coffee, you may have noticed that many companies are balking at the idea of producing their drinks in plastic or glass bottles, and are instead opting for the more eco-friendly aluminum cans that are entering the market.
La Colombe, the creators of the “draft latte” have taken a note from the playbook of beer companies and are producing their cold brew coffee drinks in cans, making them not only more environmentally-friendly but also more logical for business reasons.
The company, which already keeps ethical standards with the way they source and farm their coffee, has taken a stance on eco-friendly packaging with their production.
For years we’ve known and heard about the dangers of plastic. Not only can it influence our hormones and our internal systems, it can also greatly affect our earth and every living creature who calls it home. According to a 2017 study published in the journal Science Advances, only 9 percent of the plastics that are produced on our planet are recycled. Nine percent. Another 12 percent is incinerated, and 79 percent is left in our landfills or our oceans.
“Plastics have outgrown most man-made materials and have long been under environmental scrutiny,” the study authors write. “If current production and waste management trends continue, roughly 12,000 [million metric tons (Mt)] of plastic waste will be in landfills or in the natural environment by 2050.”
It’s no surprise that companies are looking for more planet-friendly ways to produce their foods, at a fewer expense to the environment.
With the purchase and use of reusable water bottles on the rise, everyone is trying to do their part of Mother Earth. And that’s where the aluminum cans come in.
When compared to plastic bottles, they’re the clear and easy “win.” Cans are 100 percent recyclable which means they don’t spend hundreds of years in landfills or end up alongside ocean wildlife.
Even when compared to glass bottles—which in themselves are good plastic-free alternatives—cans come out on top. Since glass bottles let in more light, it means that the drinks inside them have a much shorter shelf life. Cans, on the other hand, allow for a much longer non-perishable state.
For companies and transportation issues, cans are also number one. They’re easier to move and don’t have the shattering factor that glass does. They tend to be much lighter than glass and can handle some of the harsher wear and tear of production.
With the rise of the canned coffees, along with many other foods, it’s no surprise that we’re seeing brands go for cans. The earth is surely thankful.