Highlights from Royal Cup’s 2021 Sustainability Report

Reading time: 2 minutes

For over 125 years, Royal Cup has been dedicated to the production and distribution of fine coffees and teas across the U.S. This dedication was founded in 1896 when our country’s population was just 63,000,000 strong, the world was full of promise, and words like eco-friendly and environmental stewardship were not part of everyday vocabulary.

Our desire to continuously share the love of our favorite brews isn’t something we take for granted. To serve a growing coffee & tea connoisseur market and to preserve these flavorful experiences for the next generation, we take a serious stance on sustainability. Here are some highlights from our 2021 Sustainability Report:

Putting Our Carbon Footprint into Focus

One of our sustainability goals for 2021 was to calculate our carbon footprint. As a result, we now have a firm understanding of Royal Cup’s impact on the planet and will monitor this impact every quarter going forward.

Some of our stats for 2021 include:

  • 68,000 tons of oil saved
  • 18% reduction in fleet miles driven
  • 2,500 brewers rebuilt (in lieu of buying new)
  • 114 metric tons of metal recycled

In total, our estimated carbon output in 2021 was 10,911 metric tons. Utility consumption in our manufacturing facility increased slightly in 2021 primarily due to increasing customer demand. With a continued focus on reducing our carbon footprint, we aim to offset this impact by 2035.

We’ve also made progress toward our landfill diversion rate goal of 25%, clocking in at 19.8%. Last year, we encountered challenges with local recycling capabilities but will focus on diverting more cardboard, paper, metals, and some plastics in 2022.

Giving Back to the World

Social responsibility is everyone’s job, and we’ve placed new emphasis on this as populations around the world continue to navigate unprecedented challenges. We continue to support organizations such as the Rainforest Alliance, Neverthirst, and World Coffee Research. In addition, we have enhanced compensation and benefits packages for our Royal Cup employees. Furthermore, we have internally launched sustainability education programs and our Sustainability (SUS) Ambassador Program.

These programs are designed to: share and promote sustainability experiences and best practices, discuss and determine new corporate initiatives, and help Royal Cup, and its employees, with reducing its impact.

We’ve continued our partnership with Field Culture Compost by donating our wet coffee grounds and coffee chaff in bulk. This Birmingham-based organization turns our coffee waste into rich compost that will be used throughout the local community.

We also continue to support One Tree Planted. This organization plants new trees in areas of need and we direct our sponsored trees where we also have a geographic concentration of team members. In addition, we purchased carbon credits to better understand the impact of carbon registries and sequestration, a potential strategy to help with our carbon offset goal.

 Setting Aggressive Goals for the Future

Noting our sustainability achievements in 2021 provides a source of inspiration and a sense of accomplishment. But more importantly, our insights gained from 2021 allows us to set new benchmarks for 2022 and beyond.

By 2035, we aim for Royal Cup to be carbon neutral. In addition, becoming a Certified B Corporation is another lofty goal we’ve set. We believe that focusing on these and other objectives will allow us, Royal Cup, to be a better social and environmental steward for our communities, our supply chains, and our planet.

Curious to learn more? View the entire Royal Cup 2021 Sustainability Report.