If you are a staunch lover of the environment, you probably already own a favourite designer reusable coffee cup. You feel ill at ease ordering your spiced latte, hot cocoa, or black Americano in a disposable container with a plastic lid. It is just kinder to mother earth to bring your own cup because you don’t want to be a part of the problem that litters up landfills with plastic that takes forever to biodegrade.
However, with the recent coronavirus pandemic, you can’t help but wonder if your reusable cup is safe. After all, a disposable variant assures you get a new cup each time, which means you eliminate contact. People assume that this protects you and the barista because it keeps you from spreading the contagion.
Before you revert back to those harmful disposables, it is time to rethink this decision. Below are the reasons why a reusable cup still makes sense post-pandemic. This eco-friendly cup is always the best choice, no matter what.
No Proven Benefit to Choosing Disposable
An infectious disease specialist shared that there is no proven benefit to choosing disposable cups over your favourite designer reusable coffee cup. In their lab experiments, the virus can survive on plastic and stainless steel surfaces for up to 7 hours. That being said, even if the virus lives up to those 3 days, it is only most likely to be infectious in the first few hours. As a person who owns the cup, the risk to you is less.
If you keep the cup clean, then there is no point of reverting to the disposable kind because they offer the same risk exposure. If you are truly in a bid to create a better new normal with a more beautiful earth, keeping your reusable cups is the best alternative.
Just Make Sure the Cup is Squeaky Clean
Post-pandemic or not, you have to be conscious about staying away from people when you’re sick. You also have to be vigilant about using a very clean cup. People keep reminding everyone about hand hygiene to minimize the spread of the disease. A better approach is overall hygiene from surfaces to your reusable cup. Never take a dirty cup to the cafe – that’s really dangerous and insulting to the barista.
You must have the consciousness to do the right thing at all times. Your reusable coffee cup will always be safe just as long as you wash it religiously with antimicrobial soap and hot water to kill all forms of pathogens. In this scenario, trust is your social contract and responsibility. As long as you are committed to doing the right thing, it is safe to keep on using these cups.
Putting New Systems in Place
To ensure you are protected, you have to patronize businesses that work hard to protect the environment and minimize waste. When they possess this level of ethics, you can rest assured knowing they will do everything possible to keep you, the consumer, protected. Some cafes have developed new systems where there is zero-contact as a way to manage risks when accepting reusable cups.
The contact-less method means only you can touch your cup! The barista will concoct the drink in sanitized metal containers, and the drink will be poured carefully into your container. Again, they will not touch your cup. When it comes to saving the planet, there will always be a solution and happy medium that will keep everyone at ease.