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Bring The Yeti

Customers who bring a reusable cup will pay a low, flat rate for their beverage - no matter how large the cup is.

Photo of Justin West
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Idea Title

Idea Summary

Undermine the demand for paper cups by offering an unbeatable deal.

Company / Organization Name (if applicable)

VCU da Vinci Center

Rather than trying to design a better cup, what if we bypassed the cup altogether?  What if the incentive to use a reusable cup was so strong that fiber cups fell out of use?

At participating restaurants and coffee shops, customers who brought in a reusable beverage container would pay less for their drink than if they used a fiber cup. This would hold true even if the reusable container was the size of a kiddie pool.

Viability is the obvious concern here, but the promotion wouldn't run indefinitely.  It would run for a few years in order to get consumers into the habit of bringing reusable containers into restaurants.  Hopefully, even once the promotion stops, the behavior would continue.

This solution addresses which of the following:

  • Reusable System

How is your concept recoverable?

There would be far fewer to-go cups in need of recovery in the first place.

What regions do you plan to address with your solution (and how will you accomplish this)?

The program would be piloted at a local Richmond coffee shop. If it doesn't bankrupt that coffee shop, we'll expand to another, and etc.

What is the current stage of development of your idea?

  • Research & Early Testing

What are the biggest challenges you are facing today? What are existing gaps in your solution?

Need to assess cost and viability to figure out if the environmental rewards will outweigh sellers' revenue losses.

Mentorship Needs (please select up to 3)

  • Business Model Development
  • Growth and Scaling

In what city are you located?

Richmond, VA

In what country are you located?


How did you hear about the Challenge?

  • Someone in my network (word of mouth)


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