Takeaway coffee: The interplay between convenience and sustainability

Sherrington, Anna Maria orcid iconORCID: 0000-0003-3950-4022 Takeaway coffee: The interplay between convenience and sustainability. In: Palgrave Studies in Governance, Leadership and Responsibility. Palgrave Macmillan.

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Official URL: https://link.springer.com/series/15192


Disposable cups contribute to plastic pollution, with billions of cups discarded globally every year. The purpose of this study was to investigate how consumer sustainability attitudes and practice transfer to takeaway coffee consumption. This was done by exploring coffee drinkers’ perceived value of takeaway coffee. The coffee cup, whether disposable or reusable, was seen as integral to the takeaway coffee experience and the study also sought to explore coffee drinkers’ behaviour around cups. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with an international sample of coffee drinkers. Thematic analysis was used to analyse the interview data. Prominent themes were mapped onto Holbrook’s (1999) typology of consumer value. Takeaway coffee was found to be dominated by self-oriented values, with taste and convenience supreme elements that drive consumption. Other-oriented value elements such as sustainability received low priority in purchase decisions. In the interplay between convenience and sustainability, convenience was found to have the upper hand. The findings are of value to policy makers and coffee brands in terms of empowering coffee drinkers to enjoy takeaway coffee sustainably.

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