Compleat disposable coffee cup axes the lid, startup set to score big

Designer Peter Herman has created a concept for the all-paper disposable cup, made for coffee but perfectly viable for other liquids, that is set to blow the lid off of the industry – literally. Currently working for architectural firm Ellenzweig in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and having hacked away at this concept for over two years and a hundred prototypes now, Herman has it down to one single piece of paper. Working with graphic design firm Proverb's Daren Bascome to create the visuals you see printed on the cups here, Herman is prepping his concept for the big time now – speaking with manufacturers and retailers right this minute.

What you've got here is a body with two integrated flaps, all of this folded from a single piece of paper. This paper is glued to a single circular base, and the paper will be waterproofed in a similar manner to cups you see at the coffee shop on the daily already. Ideally, Herman says, he'd like to get them made of cellulose-based plastic so they could be composted, but we shall see. This concept will, if made and executed correctly, save retailers one whole heck of a lot of money.

"There are important variables ranging from the required modifications of existing cup-making machinery to long-term contractual arrangements between manufacturers, distributors, and retailers that will all influence the rollout timetable." – Herman

Herman notes that the cup's iconic shape along will "perform priceless PR" as it shows the company using it is committed to working on green initiatives and environmentally sound solutions to everyday problems – like how to keep one's coffee for drinking on the go. We're crossing our fingers and toes that this project takes off, as the lids of coffee cups are something we'd gladly see go the way of the dinosaur — or better yet, the way of the recycled plastic, never to be seen again (in its original form.) Save the environment by folding!

[via FastCoDesign]