WATCH: Peter Kim explains why the inventor of the Keurig brewing system is saying he regrets his creation.
TORONTO – The man responsible for creating K-Cups says he regrets making them because of the amount of waste they create. Oh, and they’re too expensive.
“I feel bad sometimes that I ever did it,” John Sylvan told The Atlantic. “I don’t have one. They’re kind of expensive to use.”
According to the magazine, Keurig Green Mountain made $4.7 billion in revenue in 2014, but the K-Cup inventor got out of the company back in 1997, selling his share for $50,000.
Keurig said it sold almost 10 billion pods last year and for the most part, the pods are not recyclable, unless a customer is willing to completely disassemble the pod.
“I gotta be honest with you, we’re not happy with where we are either. We have to get a solution, and we have to get it in place quickly,” Monique Oxender, Keurig’s Chief Sustainability Officer, told The Atlantic.
WATCH: More than 45 million Keurig brew machines have been sold, along with 30 billion K-Cups. According to critics, all the K-Cups used can wrap around the earth over 10 times.
It’s not until 2020 Keurig plans to have a fully recyclable K-Cup.
“No matter what they say about recycling, those things will never be recyclable,” Sylvan said.
Sylvan pointed out that the pods are made of specialized plastic, made in four different layers.
The Atlantic pointed out that the specialized plastic, plastic #7 on the recycling charts, can only be recycled at a handful of cities in Canada.
“I told them how to improve it, but they don’t want to listen,” Sylvan said.
As part of its 2020 recycling pledge, Keurig Canada said it plans on increasing the use of #5 plastic in its pods, “a material accepted by the recycling facilities of over 93 per cent of communities in Canada.”
The company says it is also looking at developing a biodegradable or compostable material for its pods.