Rethinking Cup Holders

As a coffee addict, I always think about all the plastic, water and other things involved in the process of making a disposable cup. Here are some facts: paper cups are used in America each year.

Used coffee cup consists of:

– Plastic.

– Water.

– Wood.

– Waste.

1 paper cup a day = 23 lbs of waste into a landfill a year.

Could fill 6.000 Olympic-sized swimming pools!

Only 1.5% of drinks served at Starbucks are in reusables. If every customer used a reusable tumbler, we could save:

– 4.4 billion gallons of water.

– 1.8 million lbs trees.

– 2.5 billion lbs of CO2.

My idea is to make a mycelium coffee cup holder. The mycelium would be mixed with coffee grounds in orders for it to grow.

As the image above describes, I want to have some information about how bad disposable coffee cups are for the environment. Also, what I am thinking is that the mycelium can help the paper and plastic in the cup decompose faster.


I will try to prototype this in the next weeks. The big challenge is to get the holder in the right format. For that I will try different processes:

1: Making a really thin layer of mycelium and shaping it as it grows.

2: growing it in a mold that has the proper shape of the cup holder.

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