The German city of Hamburg has banned coffee pods from state-run buildings as part of an environmental drive to reduce waste. Should others follow suit, asks Chris Stokel-Walker.
First there was the coffee bean, then the instant coffee jar, and then expensive coffee shop drinks on the go.
In the past decade or more coffee drinkers worldwide have adopted a new method of getting their daily jolt of caffeine - the coffee capsule machine, in which small plastic or aluminium pods capped with foil or filter paper containing coffee grounds are put into a machine that fills a cup quickly with palatable coffee.
But increasingly the single-serving coffee pods, which Nespresso first sold in 1986 in four flavours, are attracting critics who say they are an environmental menace.