Like any college student, I'm a caffeine addict. After learning that Nespresso recently released a new machine that makes full sized cups of coffee, I decided to invest in the Nespresso VertuoLine. Historically, I'd never been a fan of single-serving coffee machines, as I thought they were extremely wasteful. That was, until I learned that Nespresso capsules are 100% recyclable–and that they'll recycle them for you, for free.
Here's how it works: when you're buying new capsules online, add a free recycling bag to your shopping cart and they'll ship the bag with your order. Fill up the pre-labeled bag with all of your used capsules, drop it off at any UPS location, and it will be shipped straight to Nespresso!
Once Nespresso receives your used capsules, the coffee grounds are composted and the aluminum is recycled. Compare this process to Nespresso's counterpart competitor, Keurig. Out of the hundreds of blends, only two styles of K-cups are recyclable. And, unlike plastic, aluminum is endlessly recyclable. Keurig also won't recycle the capsules for you, and that extra effort is undoubtedly a deterrent.
Let's talk prices: a Nespresso VertuoLine costs $150, and a Keurig machine starts at $90. Nespresso capsules cost $1.10 each, which are about twice as expensive as K-cups that cost about $0.62 a piece. Although Nespresso definitely costs more, I personally think the quality of Nespresso coffee far exceeds Keurig coffee.
All-in-all, making coffee at home (whichever way you choose) instead of buying it at Starbucks can save you big bucks in the long run. Using a Nespresso machine will also help reduce your carbon footprint, as the company could not make it any easier to recycle. The long-term sustainability benefits of Nespresso over Keurig make me feel much better about the extra $0.50 per cup.