The only missing piece to making foam cups a viable solution is the lack of recycling facilities that accept them. If we spend the research dollars going into a project like NextGenCup on outfitting our communities with the needed equipment for recycling foam cups, it would satisfy several concerns.
Foam cups have several advantages over fiber. They produce little to no condensation. They keep drinks colder longer. They are reusable. More importantly, the impact on the environment to produce foam cups is significantly less than fiber. Instead of cutting down trees and using oil to produce the cups, they use a waste product from oil production reducing the impact of to-go cups on the environment. Additionally, they are 100% recyclable but unfortunately, like current fiber cups, the facilities that accept foam are very limited accross the globe.
More research needs to be done before we disregard foam as a viable alternative for to-go cups.