If you’re anything like us, your morning coffee is life. But we know that with the good, comes the bad and that’s the reality of coffee cup pollution, with billions of cups ending up in landfill each year. A small change can make a huge difference in the war on waste though and all it takes is investing in a reusable coffee cup!
In the process of trading our daily paper to-go cup for a more eco-conscious reusable mug, we’ve come across one local brand who has been bringing us joy every morning when we’re lining out for our double-shot flat white – please welcome ruby seven.
Designed by Leah Alstin, an inspiring and selfless Geelong resident, ruby seven cups are environmentally-friendly, user-friendly, socially conscious, and are pretty damn cute as well! We sit down with Leah to talk all things ruby seven.
Hi Leah, can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
I am 36 (nearly 37! Sssshhh), am married to Joel, have two children, Milla and Chad, a toy poodle called Olly and live in Geelong. I am a qualified primary teacher but have shifted my career towards admin, social media and recently launching my own business… ruby seven! I love socialising! I love being a mum! I love my friends! I love coffee! I love champagne (but I don’t drink alcohol anymore… that’s a story for another day!)! I love food! I love shopping! I love shoes! I love colour! Did I mention that I love shopping?
Why did you decide to start up ruby seven?
I started up ruby seven for a couple of reasons. Number one is because I wanted to create a constant fundraiser for Friedreich’s Ataxia (FA) research. I wanted to create and sell a product where a percentage would go towards FA research. My second reason was that I was sick of spilling my coffee. I have FA and its current effects cause me to be very unsteady so I decided to source a reusable coffee cup that wouldn’t spill, smash or burn me when I held it, but still keep my coffee hot or water cold. I was then on a mission for a cup that would suit my needs, other people’s needs with similar disabilities but also something that would appeal to everyone. The name, ruby seven, is my children’s middle names. Milla ‘Ruby’ and Chad ‘Seven’. They are my motivation for everything.
What exactly is Friedreich’s Ataxia?
To sum it up, Friedreich’s Ataxia is a genetic, neurological, progressive condition that is extremely rare, with approximately 1 in 40,000 people with this condition. The rate of progression varies from person to person. Symptoms typically begin between the ages of 5 and 15 years, although they sometimes appear in adulthood. The first neurological symptom to appear is usually difficulty walking and poor balance. Another early sign of the disease is slowness and slurring of speech. The difficulty coordinating movement (ataxia) can affect all of the muscles. It gradually worsens and slowly spreads to the arms and the trunk. Most affected individuals also develop difficulty swallowing, due to difficulty coordinating the muscles of the tongue and throat. In addition to the movement impairments, there is often a loss of sensation in the arms and legs, which may spread to other parts of the body. Other features include loss of normal reflexes, especially in the knees and ankles, and muscle weakness. Many individuals with later stages of FA also develop hearing and vision loss. Other symptoms that may occur include heart palpitations and shortness of breath. These symptoms are the result of various forms of heart disease that often accompany FA. Most individuals with the condition tire very easily and find that they require more rest and take a longer time to recover from common illnesses such as colds and flu.
What separates ruby seven from other reusable cup companies?
There are so many reusable cups on the market which is awesome. We are working so hard on becoming a waste-free world. I feel that ruby seven ticks this box, and lots more. Ruby seven cups are 100% BPA free. They are made from food-grade stainless steel. They don’t leak, smash or burn your fingers while holding. They have a non-slip base which is a huge positive for people who aren’t great at picking things up (me!) or only have the use of one hand. They are great for hot or cold beverages due to the double-wall and vacuum seal. They have a good size mouthpiece. People who are prone to choking or dribbling will get this. They fit in standard cup holders in cars, on prams, walking frames and wheelchairs. They come in cute colours and they are affordable. $25 which includes the $5 donation to Fara (Friedreich’s Ataxia Research Association).
What will 2020 bring for Ruby Seven?
Hmmm, what will 2020 bring for ruby seven? Hopefully lots! I only started in December last year and I’ve been totally blown away by the response. I’ve sold out of one colour and am close to selling out of two. I have some new colours coming and a new product! I will never stop raising funds and awareness for FA until a cure is found.
Purchase your Ruby Seven keep cup via rubyseven.com.au/
Written by Chloe Cicero