The L.A. Coliseum shows the world how reusable cups work.

L.A. Coliseum switches to reusable stadium cups from r.World

When the 2023 football season kicked off for the University of Southern California, 63,000 fans were there to watch the Trojans play the San Jose State Spartans at their iconic home stadium, the L.A. Memorial Coliseum.

And when fans left the stands that day, the dumpsters were filled with a lot less single-use waste than any previous game day. Why? Because, for the first time ever, draft beer and cocktails were served in reusable cups from r.World.

It was the first of many r.World game days to come.

In the following six home games that season, the Coliseum diverted more than 20,000 single-use cups from use, which eliminated 9782 gallons of water and just over 1000 pounds of CO2 —all thanks to their switch to r.World reusables.


The program worked immediately. At the first game, 93% of the r.Cups were returned by guests to be rewashed, sanitized, and served again at the next game. Six months later, the Coliseum had reached a 99.5% return rate.

Fans were blown away.

Christopher Kalaw, the Sustainability Assistant at the Coliseum, was the visionary who helped bring r.World reusables to the stadium, and he loves to see guests get excited about it.

“People can’t believe this cup is re-washed and used again and again,” he says. “They’ll say, ‘You’re joking. You’re telling me this cup is used over and over?’ I say, “Yeah, it’s washed and reused like 300 times.’ Once it clicks for them, they’re like, ‘Wow. That’s really cool!’”

Committed to zero waste

USC established its sustainability program in 2015, years before other schools and organizations. Achieving zero waste across the entire campus—including the stadium—has been a big part of the school’s Assignment:Earth sustainability initiative.

Because of that, the L.A. Coliseum has been serving beverages in compostable cups and recyclable cans for years. But Kalaw knew they could do even better. His goal was to further improve sustainability at the Coliseum by converting to reusable solutions.

L.A. Coliseum switches to reusable cups for stadiums

Looking for a reuse partner

When he started his search for a reuse provider, Kalaw had several non-negotiables. He knew the stadium would need:

  • A local L.A. partner
  • A solution robust enough for the stadium’s massive crowds
  • A partner nimble enough to start quickly and adjust on the fly
  • A proven program that’s been successful at hundreds of other locations
  • A solution that’s easy to implement and use

r.World met everything he was looking for.

Once he looked into r.World, Kalaw knew it was right. He brought together the Coliseum’s leadership team, their culinary partner, Legends, and their janitorial partner, ABM Industries, to present the idea.

Everyone agreed r.World was exactly what they needed.

“It was a turnkey solution,” says Kalaw. “Everybody around the table understood, ‘Okay, this is simple. We just collect the cups and return them to be washed. Easy.”

Plus, r.World was ready to go immediately. “I wanted the program to start off with the next football season,” he says. “The fastest way to do that was with r.World.”

r.World was a simple solution to replacing our compostable cups.

r.World fit into their existing operations.

Kalaw worked closely with the r.World team and the stadium staff to ensure everyone understood how, where, and why to return the cups for reuse. These efforts led to a 93% return rate right off the bat.

With a full season under their belt and another coming soon, Kalaw says the program is working great.

“I think the key to the r.Cup story at the Coliseum is that it’s a team effort,” says Kalaw. “It’s everybody coming forward and really wanting this to be a successful reuse program. I’m excited for the football season ahead.”

A better future is in your hands.

Ready to switch to r.World reusable stadium cups? Connect today for no-risk pricing and volume discounts.