Aviation News

No more plastic cups onboard Alaska Airlines!

In 2018, Alaska Airlines came up with a new initiative and that is finally seeing light at the end of the long tunnel.

Paper cups for inflight beverages

In 2018, Alaska Airlines began the process of eliminating their five largest sources of plastic waste in 2018 by removing plastic straws and stir sticks from inflight service – a first for any airline at the time. Then, in early November 2021, Alaska Airlines announced that it is transiting to Boxed Water Cartons in order to replace plastic cups to become more sustainable. Boxed Water cartons are made from renewable Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certified paper, 92% of which is plant-based, saving an estimated 1.8 million pounds of single-use plastics on our flights annually.

Well, the airline has announced that it has completed this transition process to switch to paper cups for inflight beverages, a move which eliminates more than 55 million plastic cups annually and replaces them with a more planet-friendly alternative.

Combined with its Boxed Water partnership, these changes eliminate 2.2 million pounds of plastic waste from landfills every year, the equivalent weight of 24 Boeing B737s. That’s a lot!

Doing the right thing is one of our core values and nothing is more right and urgent than protecting the beautiful places that we connect our guests to through flight. This is another important step in our journey to eliminate single-use plastics and an important step for the industry to see how product innovations can chart a course to a greener future.

said Todd Traynor-Corey, Managing Director of Guest Products, Alaska Airlines.

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All inflight beverages on Alaska flights are now served in Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certified paper cups or reusable glassware for most First Class services.

Here are some of the ways by which Alaska Airlines is eliminating their top sources of plastic waste on board to reduce their impact on the environment:

  • Eliminated plastic cups onboard with environment-friendly paper cups
  • Replacing plastic water bottles with Boxed Water
  • Encouraging guests to fill their water bottles before they fly
  • Ditching plastic straws & stir sticks in 2018.
Boxed Water onboard Alaska Airlines

Eliminating plastics is a team effort. It requires broad collaboration with our supply chain partners and inflight team to make new products and practices that move us toward a future with less plastic. That progress only happens with a deeply shared commitment to care for our environment.

added Traynor-Corey.

As part of our broader sustainability efforts, Alaska continues to pursue product innovations and supply chain advancements to achieve their 2025 goal of replacing the top five waste-producing items from onboard service and continuing to recycle.

This is great!

With this. Alaska Airlines has become one of the first airlines in the world to eliminate the use of plastic beverage cups and plastic water bottles. The airline is doing its part in eliminating plastic waste.

It’s important for any airline to be as green as possible, as the aviation industry is one of the biggest carbon emitters today and becoming sustainable in every way possible is our top priority.

While airlines are trying to achieve net zero carbon emissions, it’s still years before we can achieve that. Implementing these type of small changes is the need of the hour and it’s great to see Alaska Airlines doing just that.

Featured image by Alaska Airlines

What do you think of Alaska Airlines’ plastic-free initiatives? Let me know in the comments section below.

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