December 10, 2014

Designed and made in Melbourne, UPPERCUP is a genuinely sustainable reusable cup. Here's the story...

Completely recyclable and genuinely sustainable, Uppercup is a stylish reusable cup that was designed and is produced entirely in Melbourne. Produced with a mixture of artisan techniques and cutting edge technology, it's mid-century inspired design has been recognised by Design Awards in both Melbourne and New York.

Uppercup's founder, James McKay, started dreaming the product into being three years ago. The concept was to bring together McKay's experience in the specialty coffee industry with his passion for street culture and design.

"I’ve always been passionate about design and I set out to create a global brand around good minimal design, and coffee culture as well as broader influences and cultural references that interest me, such as architecture, tattooing, music and art, cycling and commuting culture, sustainability, and street culture. The takeaway coffee cup was the perfect vehicle to bring together those cultural references. I’m now connecting with new stockists, collaborating with artists, and working with people from all around the world and it all comes back to the universality of good coffee and design."

While there are a numerous other reusable cups on the market, Uppercup is a genuinely sustainable, locally produced reusable cup that solves some of the usability issues that have plagued other brands.

"We had had so much experience and feedback about other reusable cups that eventually absorb bacteria - leading to bad smells and tastes - over time due to the low density material that they use, that eventually people would discard them after a few uses, defeating the purpose of buying a reusable cup in the first place! So we did a huge search for the finest material that would solve this issue. We use a patented, high density plastic that has a beautiful, high quality glass-like finish. It is incredibly durable and long lasting. It is heat resistant, dishwasher safe and BPA free. Being high density means it won’t absorb flavours or smells over time which is absolutely crucial."

The end result is a product that is not only functional, stylish and durable, but also ticks all the boxes in terms of sustainability. McKay's team spent a long time in the design process to ensure that no compromises were made in delivering a genuinely environmentally friendly product.

"We use a clean energy process called ultrasonic-welding. Our packaging is from 100% post consumer waste material that is printed in Melbourne with vegetable based inks. UPPERCUP has been designed from the perspective of minimising the impact of material use - unlike other reusable cups that use 3-4 materials, we only use materials from 2 recycling families, meaning that there is less processing at end of life. UPPERCUP is also completely recyclable. UPPERCUP has also been designed to have a long lifespan so that it doesn’t need to be replaced."

We're excited at Industry Beans to now be stocking Uppercup both online and instore at our Fitzroy Roastery. We've also teamed up with Uppercup and are now retailing an equipment pack at our online store. Check it out here.