KFC will be introducing Seattle’s Best coffee — a brand within the Starbuck’s brand — at some of its restaurants in the United Kingdom with an incredible edible twist: after you’ve slurped down the coffee, you can munch on the cup.
“If our customers occasionally like to have their cake and eat it, why wouldn't they want to have their cup and eat it, instead? poses KFC spokeswoman Jocelyn Bynoe,” to USA Today’s Bruce Horovitz, who broke the story here. “She says KFC has been experimenting with edible packaging for some time to see if it could be a feasible product to bring to market in limited quantities.”
“Before you even bring it up, yes, we do think it’s weird that England gets to try a coffee cup cookie before the United States, given that the ‘K’ in ‘KFC’ stands for Kentucky. But it is what it is,” writes Karen Lo in The Daily Mail.
And what it is, actually, is a Scoff-ee Cup “— which, gosh that's a terrible name, you guys …,” opines Max Knoblauch, Mashable’s “Watercooler reporter” in New York, who also points out that Michael Keaton had a similar idea in the 1982 movie “Night Shift.”
But The Mirror’s Sarah Ridley observes that they are “aptly named” — in that “scoff” is common slang for “to eat” in the British Isles — while reporting that the cups were developed in partnership with The Robin Collective, a UK firm that describes itself as “Purveyors of Curious Events and Experimental Food.”
Here’s how it works, according to CNET’s Anthony Domanico: The cup is “fashioned out of a cookie wrapped in edible sugar paper and fortified with a layer of heat-resistant white chocolate that helps keep the cookie crispy and your coffee hot. As you drink your joe, the chocolate lining melts over time, making your coffee a bit sweeter and softening the cookie so it sort of melts in your mouth.”
Then, when you’re done, you can scarf down … er, scoff, the rest of the cup.
“Not only do the edible cups taste amazing, but they smell delicious too,” Brandy Wright of the Robin Collective tells The Mirror’s Ridley. “We’ve infused different cups with a variety of ambient aromas including Coconut Sun Cream, Freshly Cut Grass and Wild Flowers.”
There are no plans to bring the cup to the U.S., according to KFC. Not that the idea of edible packaging is totally bonkers, or even novel.
“Other companies have been offering similar items,” reports the New York Times’ Stephanie Strom. “Lavazza, the Italian coffee brand, had edible cookie cups, while Coolhaus sells its ice cream sandwiches in potato starch wrappers printed with inks made from vegetables.”
The Huffington Post’s Carly Ledbetter reports that “Cronut creator Dominique Ansel, who is credited with starting the edible cup trend with his milk-and-cookie shots, currently sells the edible cookie cups at his shop in NYC. For a West Coast option, consider L.A.-based coffee shops Alfred Coffee & Kitchen. They make the ‘Alfred Cone,’ a chocolate-dipped coffee cup perfect for holding espresso.”
And Stonyfield Frozen Yogurt Pearls — “frozen yogurt sold inside edible, fruit-flavored packaging skins” — made an appearance in some Whole Foods stores around Boston last year, USA Today’s Horovitz reports.
Meanwhile, disposing of food itself is becoming a big problem, according to a new report from the UK government’s waste advisory body Waste and Resources Action Program (Wrap) for the Global Commission on the Economy and Climate, The Guardian reports.
“One-third of all food produced in the world ends up as waste, with food wasted by consumers globally valued at more than [$402 billion] per year,” according to the study. “But that cost could soar to [$602 billion] as the global middle class expands over the course of the next 15 years.”
“Less food waste means greater efficiency, more productivity, and direct savings for consumers. It also means more food available to feed the estimated 805 million that go to bed hungry each day,” says Helen Mountford, global program director for the New Climate Economy. “Reducing food waste is also a great way to reduce the greenhouse gas emissions that contribute to climate change.”