Have you ever desired a sweet snack while you're downing that morning coffee on the run, but really can't afford to use your other hand to hold it?
Well, Kentucky Fried Chicken has a game-changer for you, and the fast food chain is pushing the limits of what we consider a beverage container with its latest announcement.
It's called the "Scoff-ee Cup," an edible coffee cup made out of a wafer biscuit, wrapped in sugar paper and lined with a heat-resistant white chocolate. The parent company of KFC, Yum! Brands, plans to introduce the cups sometime this year in its British locations to coincide with the launch of the chain's new sale of Seattle Best Coffee from Starbucks, according to USA Today.
The New York Times reports the aim behind the design of the cup's ingredients is to have the chocolate partially melt and soften the wafer like a biscotti, when dipped in a coffee.
"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?" KFC spokeswoman Jocelyn Bynoe told USA Today.
The cups also feature aromas and come in the scents of “Coconut Sun Cream,” “Freshly Cut Grass” and “Wild Flowers,” which were designed by the British experimental food company, the Robin Collective. They were designed to spurn positive memories of warm weather, according to the Telegraph.
Other food brands have made attempts at edible packaging, as well. The Italian coffee company Lavazza introduced tiny espresso crunchy cookie cups, made with a sugar layer to prevent leakage. Also, the yogurt maker Stonyfield unveiled frozen yogurt pearls at a handful of Boston grocery stores last year, according to USA Today. They featured balls of frozen yogurt encompassed in a edible fruit skin shell.
The concept behind an edible container was partially to target environmentally conscientious millennials, according to USA Today. "It could fit with any number of brand positions from 'fast' (no bussing); to 'green' (no waste) to 'fun' (at least, it seems fun.)," branding expert Tracey Riese told USA Today.
However, Ms. Riese seemed to think the edible coffee cups at KFC would be more of a short-term marketing ploy, as opposed to a long-term campaign. She told USA Today that since coffee sales are not central to KFC's brand, the edible cups were more of a "promotional novelty."
One thing could derail coffee drinkers' dreams of having a satisfying snack rather than simply pitching their coffee cup in the trash – an ineffective coffee container. According to Ms. Riese, a poor/wet/messy coffee drinking experience on the part of customers would do far more harm to KFC's coffee ambitions than featuring a delicious coffee cup would do to grow the brand.
No word on the calorie count of these seemingly tasty containers, and Yum! Brands does not plan on introducing them in their US restaurants anytime soon, according to USA Today.