2nd March 2020
Dry recycled coffee grounds – a sustainable raw material for product development
Behind every cup of coffee, there are wet grounds unnecessarily discarded and which, if left to biodegrade will emit methane, a greenhouse gas 34 times more potent than carbon dioxide. This despite the fact that the wasted coffee grounds contain residual value that can be exploited to benefit both people and planet. But there is another option.
Fortunately, there is a way to make use of this wasted resource and reduce these greenhouse gas emissions. By diverting the grounds away from landfill sites and renewing them into raw material for sustainable commercial and industrial applications, spent coffee grounds can enjoy a second life.
The rising consumer demand for sustainable products, accelerated by the climate crisis, is fuelling product innovation. And at bio-bean, we’re pleased to see the flow of new products coming to market that use spent coffee grounds as a core ingredient.
From furniture and fabrics to mushroom growing and 3D printing, spent coffee grounds are proving to be a versatile material for a range of industries.
The challenge for product innovators in using spent coffee grounds is the lack of access to a consistent and secure supply of contaminant-free, dried grounds. This can inhibit many innovative start-ups from scaling up and evolving as businesses.
We’ve spent years diligently developing a unique supply chain, securing collections from businesses across the UK for a steady, high-volume stream of spent coffee grounds.
The difficulty with recycling spent grounds at scale is in removing both the contaminants and moisture. But we’ve developed proprietary methodologies which allow us to process large volumes of coffee waste for reuse. And we are now the world’s largest recycler of spent coffee grounds!
When spent grounds arrive at our Cambridgeshire factory, we put them through a decontamination process before drying them to pre-set moisture levels. Our unique process allows us to provide a consistent, bulk raw material to businesses seeking to create transformative change through innovation. With the ability to process to bespoke specifications we can further refine the product to meet specific demands of a particular customer. And our technology guarantees a uniform product, meaning a consistent particle size and bulk density.
There are several benefits to using recycled coffee grounds in product development. Clean and dry recycled grounds are a sustainable material that can help products appeal to eco-conscious consumers, contributing directly to business growth. And using recycled coffee grounds can contribute to savings on greenhouse gas emissions compared to using conventional materials which are often petro-chemical based.
Are you a business or product innovator interested in using spent coffee grounds as your next sustainable building material? Get in touch to find out more.