A new innovative cup designed to hold hot beverages has been created by SOFi, who has made this cup with the intention of significantly reducing plastic waste. The cup is 100% plastic-free and does not require a separate lid.
SOFi has spent four years researching and designing this cup and has developed a product which has three flaps that creatively fold together and create a spill-proof spout. This design means that plastic waste has been effectively reduced through the cup being 100% plastic-free and furthermore the lack of a separate lid means that material and manufacturing costs are saved for businesses. This is also the case for storage space and freight costs which are reduced through this new design. The design also includes a locking mechanism which prevents any spills and the final touch is a water-based coating.
It is the water-based coating and all the other environmentally friendly properties which set this cup apart from other designs from other companies. Multiple other attempts at making an eco-friendlier cup have occurred, with these cups being either recyclable or biodegradable. However, the issues with these cups is that most companies opt for a plastic laminate as a sealant, consequently making the cups much more difficult to recycle or compost. On top of this , these cups are often manufactured to include a plastic lid, making them once again more difficult to recycle. Therefore, despite the effort to manufacture cups which are better for the environment, around fifty billion cups are annually thrown away, in the United States.
The creation of this biodegradable, lidless hot cup has been in progress since Brothers Brandon and Jordan Leeds founded SOFi in 2019. Their original aim revolved around reducing plastic waste in waterways and beaches of Miami, so they created the paper straw. Their concept consisted of a paper straw which lasts for hours, remains in shape and intact and also, does not taste like paper. Due to the success of the cup, the brothers continued their business and expanded into looking at the development of a 100% plastic free, biodegradable cup.
Co-founder of SOFi Products, Brandon Leeds, commented, “There are no cups currently on the market that are 100% biodegradable and eliminate the need for a lid.”