Wesleyan’s student-run café is going greener: as of Sunday, Espwesso is asking for a 25 cent donation for cups in an attempt to decrease waste.
“We want to remind everyone to bring their own cups,” said Espwesso Manager Jacob Eichengreen ’13.
The café dishes out somewhere between 2,000 to 2,500 free drip coffees each semester. Espwesso is unable to afford compostable cups, but has already switched from Dixie to Solo, which is a more socially responsible company according to Eichengreen. He hopes the new policy will provide incentive for students to bring their own cups.
“It doesn’t cost that much to buy one mug and then if you use it everyday you’re going to end up saving money anyway,” said Julia Harari ’15.
Last semester on average four people each night brought in their own cups, according to Eichengreen’s estimate. With the new incentive, Eichengreen hopes to see an increase in the number of students bringing their own cups. Any coffee drink can be made in re-usable cups, which would lower the café’s overall waste.
“Hopefully we can turn this into a zero-waste operation,” Eichgreen said.
Eichengreen noted that good coffee comes from reliable roasters and that the café’s supply comes from a roaster in California. Organic coffee sold at It’s Only Natural, a market on Main Street, is Espwesso’s back up when they run out of coffee reserves.
“The most important thing to look for when buying coffee from a roaster is whether or not they source their coffee themselves, [and whether they] make every effort to build a relationship with the farmer growing their beans,” Eichengreen wrote in an e-mail to The Argus.
In addition to the new cup donation policy, Espwesso plans to educate the campus on different types of coffee. “Coffee talks,” run by the café, will feature student presentations and coffee tastings in an effort to encourage students to drink ethically and sustainably grown coffee.