Announcing Berkeley’s first Reusable Cup Program

Meet Vessel!

The Ecology Center is pleased to announce the launch of Berkeley’s first Reusable Cup service. The pilot program will launch in mid-September at select food businesses on the UC Berkeley campus and in the Telegraph Avenue area in South Berkeley, with Vessel, a reusable cup check out service.

How It Works

Vessel provides free, reusable, stainless-steel, thermal cups with silicone lids to participating customers through an online app much like a bike-sharing or library book system. Customers check out the cup by scanning a QR code on the cup with their phone’s camera. When they are done, they can return the cup to any participating business within five days. The dirty cups are then picked up by Vessel via a bicycle pedicab, sent to a sanitizing/washing station, and then delivered back to cafes and restaurants for reuse. If customers do not return the cup, they are charged for its cost.

Where To Find Vessel

The program will launch for consumers at ten pilot sites starting mid-September 2019 and running through the Spring of 2020. Currently confirmed vendor partners include Caffe Strada, Free Speech Cafe, and Cafe Moffitt—all owned and operated by Berkeley business owner Darryl Ross. 

“I feel privileged to be asked to participate in the pilot program with Vessel and to partner with all the great organizations involved and the Ecology Center. We’ve had a long relationship with the Ecology Center and are excited to work with them to reduce the use of disposable cups in Berkeley,” said Daryl Ross, owner of Stradivarius.

The pilot will allow consumers to take active steps towards eliminating the underlying habits of single-use disposable culture, in a convenient way. Over the course of the pilot program, the Ecology Center and Vessel intend to rid the Telegraph Business District and select partners on the UC Berkeley Campus area of the 1.5 million disposable cups those businesses would normally go through. Stay tuned for announcements of additional locations and other news! 

Donate now to support this groundbreaking pilot!

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Media Coverage

What to know about Berkeley’s reusable cup program,” Berkeleyside

Berkeley to pilot reusable coffee cup program,” KGO-TV

Ecology Center, Vessel announce partnership to kickstart use of reusable cups in Berkeley,” The Daily Californian

The Ecology Center, Vessel Launch Reusable Cup Service In Berkeley, Calif.,” Waste 360


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2 thoughts on “Announcing Berkeley’s first Reusable Cup Program

  1. Pingback: California Coffee Shops Ditch Disposable To-Go Cups for Reusable Metal Options | Thes Travel

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