Arguably, Nespresso machines are expensive enough on their own, and then you realize you have to buy all of the individual pods as well. Not only can this add up to big costs over time, but all that single-use plastic can also heavily tax our environment. Dutch company Bluecup thinks it has the solution to both those problems with its reusable espresso cup.
Simply top off the reusable plastic cup with your favorite espresso, place a disposable foil lid on top, and insert the pair into the capsule creator. With a press and a twist, the foil is adhered to the cup, ready to drop into your Nespresso machine.
The secret lies in both the design of the cup and the design of the foil, and Bluecup hold patents for both of the products’ designs. The cup features a soft o-ring on both the top and the bottom of its upper flange, which creates a watertight seal without the use of adhesive or thermal sealing, while also eliminating “watery coffee,” according to the company. The foil seal features a rolled edge, which acts as a sort of aluminum spring to hold the foil tight once it gets over the cup’s flange. Bluecup’s pods don’t last forever, but you can reuse them about 100 times, according to its creators.
All this leads to a product that’s 99 times as environmentally friendly as the regular disposable cups, according to Bluecup. The company also figures each cup costs you around ten cents, whereas comparable Nespresso cups can cost 35 cents per brew. The machine also allows users to fill the cups with whichever espresso they prefer, rather than be locked into whatever is in Nespresso’s parent company, Nestlé’s, portfolio.
Bluecup is looking to raise money on Kickstarter to help it launch, although it has already passed its goal. The device starts at about $60, and While the usual Kickstarter warnings apply here, another consideration is whether Nestlé will pull the same trick Keurig did back in 2014, making a machine that renders refillable cups unusable. Although based on the backlash Green Mountain Coffee Roasters endured from the move, you may be safe.