“I love coffee! In fact, I use my Keurig every day.”
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard variations of this statement used by my friends and peers over the past several years.
Introduced in 1998, Keurig’s innovative single cup brewing system lets people brew the perfect cup of gourmet coffee in less than a minute, without having to grind beans, measure coffee, handle filters or clean up. It’s as simple as it gets.
Keurig has become synonymous with easy-to-brew idiot-proof coffee that supposedly tastes better than you might get from a normal drip coffee machine. There are several problems with Keurig: first, it is single-handedly ruining people’s perception of what great coffee tastes like. Second, it is operating under the false veil of being “cheaper” than the tools and fresh coffee used in other single-cup brew methods. Third, plastic Keurig K-cups are not recyclable and present an ever-increasing problem as they become more and more popular.
Dear Coffee, I Love You. did a post a on this back in March when the term “Love Keurig?” was a sponsored trending topic on Twitter. DCILY does a great job of communicating what so many of us feel that love coffee, myself included, when it comes to Keurig. More than that, DCILY has facts about Keurig that may surprise or even shock you. They have graciously allowed me to re-post a part of that post: below is the introduction. Click here for the full post.
LOVE KEURIG? NOPE.
Love Keurig? Not one bit. But yesterday Twitter was all a-buzz about the machine that brews single-serve coffee pods (K-cups) while they were “promoted” to the top of the trending list. So I tweeted my 140 character dissertation on the topic, simply stating that “Keurig is bad for coffee and bad for the Earth. #killthekcup.” While a few people—145 of them—agreed with me and re-shared the message, not everyone felt the same.
I was quickly contacted by Keurig with a link to their reusable K-cup as if that rectified the issue and put an end to the discussion. Then a few loyal K-cup fans were upset that I criticized their right to never have to wipe coffee off their counter tops, followed by another guy who thought that the billions of non-recyclable plastic cups are not an issue and I should invest my activist angst elsewhere.
The reality, it is a big issue—not just in the coffee industry, but in the bigger ecological picture. When the most important ”R” of conservation is to “reduce,” ignoring the rapid growth of an unnecessary and disposable product like K-cups is far from inconsequential. So, I’ve broken down my issues with this growing coffee trend into four categories: economics, quality, environment and the company behind it all.