Kill the Cup is a startup nonprofit that encourages people to bring a reusable cup when they get coffee. Did you know that 100 BILLION disposable cups are sent to U.S. landfills each year?
Most coffee cups are coated with plastic and can't be recycled. Plastic creates toxic pollution at every stage of its existence: manufacture, use, and disposal.
But what incentives are in place to encourage change? Ten cent discounts are insufficient, and most people grow tired of direct environmental messaging.
At Kill the Cup, we make it FUN for people to bring reusable cups. When it comes to environmental behavior change, research shows that consumers are most likely to respond to social norms messaging.
After buying their morning coffee, we encourage people to upload photos with their reusable cups. Each photo serves as entry into weekly and grand prize raffles! These photos help establish the social norms that prove so effective.
Successful pilot programs on college campuses have generated a 25% increase in the rate at which people bring reusable cups when they buy coffee -- in just 4 weeks! And get this: the coffee shops were more profitable. So what's next?
Kill the Cup is raising funds to support a multi-university "$10,000 Reusable Cup Challenge" that will allow university student organizations to compete with one another to create the most environmental impact on campus.
Think of it as March Madness -- but for student associations that are competing to have the greatest environmental impact. We have already receive interest from universities in Chicago, Boston, Washington, D.C., Los Angeles, and San Diego.
We need your help to make it happen! Kill the Cup has partnered with a number of forward-thinking companies to offer exciting perks in exchange for your contributions.
The reusable mugs and eco-friendly t-shirts will be ordered at the end of the Indiegogo campaign, so it may take until August to receive your perks. We hope you don't mind!
Thanks to our friends at Causora, we are able to offer One-for-One rewards. You can receive Thank You Credits that are redeemable at a growing number of socially conscious merchants, including TOMS, Lyft, and Zipcar.
$10,000 will be used towards prize money for the Reusable Cup Challenge! These funds will be redistributed to student organizations to help them further environmental initiatives at their own campus.
We'll also invest $7,500 in a technology platform that will streamline many of the manual processes that make our campaigns "go." And the remaining funds will be used to co-brand all of the perks for the Indiegogo campaign.
Drew Beal and Mike Taylor, Kill the Cup's co-founders, met in 2011 when they started grad school at UC San Diego's Rady School of Management. They launched Kill the Cup as their MBA capstone project in April 2013.
"This phenomenal team developed their first social venture project, Kill the Cup, in my class at the Rady School of Management. They were exceptional students - among the hardest working and most focused in the class. They learned, listened, persevered and made a real impact at UCSD in reducing the use of paper coffee cups and generating excitement around sustainability and corporate social responsibility."
Georgetown (Fall 2013)
Last Fall, we teamed up with The Students of Georgetown, Inc. to run a Kill the Cup campaign at the D.C.-based university. They ran the program for four weeks, and replicated the success of our pilot campaign.
“We’re really hoping that members of the Georgetown community will become aware of how wasteful coffee cups are. We’re hoping to run it every year and to get people excited about it and thinking about sustainability.”
Stanford Demo Day
“Kill the Cup is driven by their passion for environmental impact and they impressed investors, partners and companies during our Demo Days across the country. Kill the Cup won the crowd vote for "Best Pitch" and "Most Impactful" at the event on Stanford University's campus - the first time this has happened!"