From coffee to hot chocolate, people love their portable hot drinks. Especially in the winter time! Unfortunately, something that tends to go hand-in-hand with these beverages is the plastic lid.
And you don't have to look far to see why that's a problem. Many city streets are covered in discarded plastic lids, and the waste also finds its way into all sorts of unwanted ecosystems, from forests and wetlands to oceans.
For the last few years, a number of innovations have arrived to address this problem, including compostable cups that naturally decompose and reusable cups that people carry with them. But the new Unocup is something else entirely: a no-lid, foldable cup.
New York-made... globally used?
The cup with designed by a pair of New Yorkers, Tom Chan and Kaanur Papo, which makes a lot of sense — as America's most densely-populated city, New York generates a lot of waste. Tom and Kaanur were sick of seeing so many lids littering their city's streets. In 2015, they came up with the original idea for the Unocup.
It's a cup without a plastic lid. Instead, the top edges of the cup would fold over to prevent spilling the drink inside. Though it sounds simple enough, the pair still spent four years and over 800 different prototypes before they perfected their design.
And now, after raising money on the funding website Kickstarter, they want to spent 2020 finally delivering their cup to the world so that it can be used everywhere.
A real solution?
So will the Unocup take off? It sounds and looks like a pretty good idea, and the world could certainly use fewer lids! And whether it's this cup or another, you can argue that this change is coming regardless. Of course, we can't find any information about whether or not the cup itself is recyclable or compostable — another important factor!
Judge for yourself by viewing this video made by Mashable below.