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Dec. 9, 2019

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Beer pong getting sustainability makeover

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Published: September 2, 2019, 6:03am

BROOMFIELD, Colo. — Beer pong may be getting more environmentally friendly.

Ball Corp., the 139-year-old packaging company that has benefited as beverage companies shift away from plastic amid pollution backlash, is launching an aluminum cup.

The company says it can supplant the red Solo cups that dot college campuses and picnic tables around the U.S. with a product it calls “infinitely recyclable.” It also has eyes on the beer cups sold at major professional sports stadiums, some of which will start using the product this fall.

The new product will be more expensive than its competitors, but the company is betting that younger consumers concerned about plastic pollution will pay a premium to drink beer from a more sustainable cup.

John Hayes, chief executive officer, said the cups will initially cost around 25 cents each. A pack of 100, 16-ounce red Solo cups is available for $16.95 on Walmart.com, or around 17 cents per cup.

The pilot test will start this week at a major university that has pledged to reduce its use of plastic. The cups should be available at retail stores in 2021, Hayes said.

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