Starbucks plans to cut down on the plastic in its cold drink cups

The chain says its cold drinks and the cups they're served in are surging in popularity. A redesigned cup could use as much as 20% less plastic.
A photo provided by Starbucks shows newly designed cold drink cups
Posted at 9:06 PM, Apr 18, 2024

Starbucks has redesigned its single-use cold drink cups to cut down on plastic waste.

The chain says its cold drinks are surging in popularity; they now account for some 75% of Starbucks' drink sales annually.

This has caused an associated increase in plastic use, so Starbucks has reworked the design of the cups so that they use as much as 20% less plastic.

Now, Starbucks claims, the cups involve less energy and emissions to manufacture, and will help avert more than 13.5 million pounds of plastic waste that would otherwise go to landfills.

Updated cups are expected to roll out in its stores by the end of April.

Starbucks adds spicy drinks and cold foam to its menu
Three side-by-side images of Starbucks' new drinks

Starbucks adds spicy drinks and cold foam to its menu

Ready to try these sweet and spicy drinks? Get one for you and a friend with Starbucks' BOGO deal later this week.


While the new cups are only meant to be used once before they're recycled, Starbucks has said it wants to make all of its packaging either reusable, recyclable or compostable by 2030.

Starbucks wants to start testing an in-house reusable cup system in some markets, which would let consumers pay a deposit for a cup they could reuse at Starbucks stores and later return when it was worn out.

Starbucks this year also started filling personal drink cups during drive-up and mobile service, building on an option that was already available to people who came to the counter.