• Agriculture
  • Digital
  • Supply Chain
  • Textile
  • Tourism
  • Waste & Recycling
  • Water

lot 8: Decreasing plastic waste in Thailand

Happy Cup: A convenient, hygienic and affordable alternative to single-use plastic cups in closed spaces

Happy Cup links eco-minded beverage customers with eco-minded business owners in a joint disposable-cup pollution fighting effort, through a two-prong approach.

Stage 1 is an online, map-based community platform that allows customers to quickly find reusable-cup friendly businesses, water refills and vegan milk options. Café, restaurant and drink shop owners can choose between a freemium and premium account to promote themselves on the platform. The freemium account provides them a basic listing on the Happy Cup Map, while the premium account gives them a customised profile which is promoted through various marketing channels. Advertising placements on the website supplement the business model.

As a community base, the Happy Cup online platform will become an app which will support Stage 2. 

Stage 2 will be a subscription-based reusable cup borrowing system to provide the missing alternative to takeaway cups. Through the Happy Cup app, customers will be able to find businesses participating in the cup-borrowing system, drop-off locations for their used cup, as well as track the amount of disposable cup waste that the Happy Cup community is avoiding.

Business idea developed by: Circular Design Lab, Thammasat University Faculty of Innovation.

Sub-challenge: End of single-use plastic beverage containers: How might we provide a convenient hygienic and affordable alternative to single-use plastic cups in a closed (or semi-closed) space?

Impact estimation:

  • Preventing the use of 28.7 million cups or 12 654,5337 tons of plastic waste by 2025

  • Contributing to Sustainable Development Goal 12 "Responsible Consumption and Production"

  • Social impact: normalising waste avoidance