Designing takeaway coffee cups for events

Janice Kanniah
July 22, 2022
Designing takeaway coffee cups for events

As the world continues to settle into a post-pandemic way of life, many countries are cautiously reintroducing public events. 

The 2022 UK Pride parade saw over 1 million people attend – the highest number in the event’s history. Additionally, the electronic dance music festival Tomorrowland broke records by selling out 600,000 passes for its three-weekend event.

This is a clear sign that public festivals and sporting events are returning to pre-pandemic attendance levels. For specialty coffee roasters and coffee shops, this presents an opportunity to expand their customer base and brand awareness by offering attendees takeaway coffee and cold brew beverages.

Catering to a public event is an effective way to boost a roaster’s bottom line with relatively little investment required. This includes designing takeaway coffee cups for events that help spread brand awareness and mindshare to a broader range of customers.

Find out more about designing takeaway coffee cups for events, and how it can boost business. 

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Image of festival attendee holding up a recyclable plastic takeaway coffee cup in an article about designing takeaway coffee cups for events

How have events changed in 2022?

Since the outbreak of Covid-19, the way events take place around the world has changed dramatically.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) made universal recommendations concerning large public events, such as venue capacity and hygiene protocols. However, many countries and individual event venues may differ in the protocols they choose to follow. 

As a result, roasters and coffee shops could come across factors that may affect how they serve beverages at upcoming events. 

Disposable cup demand

Many governments are considering imposing levies on disposable cups to help curb plastic pollution.

While this decision is practical for restaurants and coffee shops, it is less so for public events. This is because most event venues prohibit attendees from bringing in their own food and drinks, and therefore, may not allow them to bring in reusable cups. 

Additionally, even if given the choice, many attendees may prefer not to carry a weighty cup with them, or have to worry about its sake-keeping. 

Not to mention the fact they would have to queue to wash the cups between uses, which is not ideal for many festivals, where these amenities may be scarce.

As a result, disposable takeaway coffee cups are likely to remain the most hygienic and practical solution for event catering. Research shows the demand for disposable cups has increased, along with the demand for on-the-go drink services.

Increased environmental awareness

Typically, large-scale public events can have a negative impact on the surrounding environment. 

For example, a five-day event catering to just 2,200 people can produce almost a ton of plastic.

As people are becoming more aware of their individual environmental impact, attending a festival that markets itself as being more sustainable could appeal to many. This type of festival could allow attendees to boost their social status, learn more about sustainable products and practices, and connect with other eco-conscious people.

Additionally, it means roasters and coffee shops can expect more events to mandate the use of recyclable or compostable coffee cups and food packaging.

Furthermore, this could tackle a common issue faced with disposable cups: their disposal. As the majority of event environments are access controlled, they can implement strict anti-littering rules.

As a result, attendees may be corralled into disposing of takeaway coffee cups in dedicated bins. 

Research shows people are more likely to dispose of the cups in a bin that is within their proximity, instead of simply throwing it on the ground. Close proximity would be within 40 feet or 12 metres away from anyone at all times.

This reduces the risk of disposed cups polluting other waste streams or ending up in landfills or incinerators.

In certain cases, event managers may hire waste management teams to offload these bins, further ensuring they will be recycled correctly. This is common when the event space is shared by others and must remain clean between uses.

Image of sustainable takeaway coffee cup  with s-ripple wall and compostable lid, in an article about designing takeaway coffee cups for events

What to consider when designing takeaway coffee cups for events 

It is common for event organisers to choose a single provider for each product or service in order to avoid competition. 

In this case, coffee shops and roasters stand to benefit, provided they make an impression on the people served.

Often, this will involve more than offering takeaway coffee cups that only convey a business name and logo. 

Customer expectations of events have changed drastically. Events are increasingly integrating interactive artificial intelligence (AI) and video content in an omnichannel experience.

This is usually consistent across a range of communication mediums and includes takeaway cups and food packaging. 

It also includes creating a seamless customer experience whenever consumers encounter a roaster’s or a coffee shop’s branding.

For instance, designing takeaway coffee cups with QR codes customers can scan to access event-specific footage or discounts on future purchases will appeal to many consumers.

The QR code can also redirect customers to a roaster’s website, where they share video content on a specific coffee’s origin or producer.

Adapting to the needs of today’s event attendees is likely to overlap with that of everyday customers. Roasters and coffee shops will want to invest in compostable or recyclable takeaway cups and cups sleeves that are easy to identify and recycle. 

This can help ensure a customers’ coffee drinking experience at an event matches the quality of coffee served in-store.

An event is also an ideal opportunity to try out something new, and see how existing customers will respond without making a significant financial investment. 

Additionally, this can give roasters an indication of what type of cups and materials to invest in, and how customers react to branding efforts such as QR codes or cup branded information.

Image of barista serving takeaway coffee at events in an article about Designing takeaway coffee cups for events

Whether roasters and coffee shops want to revisit their takeaway coffee cup branding and materials, or specifically designing takeaway coffee cups for events, the team at MTPak Coffee can help.

We can help with designing takeaway coffee cups for events that have the desired impression on your target audience while helping you stick to your sustainability commitments.

We offer cups in three different sizes: 8oz, 12oz, and 16oz. Each one is available to order as either single or double wall, while we also sell sleeves for all three sizes. These sleeves can be fully customised to showcase your brand and highlight your coffee’s characteristics.

For more information on sustainable takeaway coffee cup options, contact our team.

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