What is bio-bean Elements? - bio-bean

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21st September 2020

What is bio-bean Elements?

A question in a student’s mind sparked the bio-bean we now know. Is the film of oil on this cold americano an untapped resource? After delving into research on the matter, it transpired that the residual oil found in spent coffee could indeed be used as a fuel. So, bio-bean was born and, more recently, bio-bean Elements.

Elements is about providing sustainable solid biofuels for industry and consumers by using the untapped, naturally high calorific value found in coffee grounds. From Coffee Logs to coffee pellets we go full circle with coffee waste, recycling it to be used once more.

And by diverting and recycling spent coffee grounds we save 80% of the CO2e emissions compared to the grounds being sent to landfill, and 70% compared to them going through anaerobic digestion.

How coffee-based solid biofuels are made

Almost half a million tonnes of heavy, wet coffee grounds are created every year in the UK. It’s an unavoidable waste stream from the nation’s desire for coffee. A waste stream that grows by 95 million cups of coffee every day.

From independent to established coffee shop chains, office blocks and instant coffee manufacturers, we receive at our recycling plant thousands of tonnes of spent coffee grounds every year, with capacity to take even more.

It’s at our recycling plant in Cambridgeshire that the wet coffee grounds are ready to be decontaminated and put through our engineered drying process to lower the moisture content from around 60% down to around 10%.

Once the grounds have been dried and put through a final sieve, we compress them into coffee pellets or Coffee Logs.

bio-bean Elements: coffee pellets

The requirement for sustainable solutions to combat climate change isn’t a requirement that’s going away any time soon. Making sustainable choices is now commonplace in many business strategies, with a corporate responsibility to deliver on internal and external carbon goals. So, when it comes to industrial and commercial use of biomass boilers, a more sustainable energy solution is at hand.

Exploiting the high calorific content of coffee, over 15% higher than standard timber pellets, our biomass pellets, made from recycled spent coffee grounds, offer an ideal solution. They have a consistently low moisture content, high ash melting point, high bulk density and good durability.

This efficient burn profile also makes them a cost-efficient alternative to wood pellets. For the same energy output, your business will have a reduced volume and fewer deliveries.

To top it off, coffee pellets are Sustainable Fuel Register (SFR) accredited. Find out more about our coffee biomass pellets here.

bio-bean Elements: Coffee Logs

From that warm morning latte to a chilly winter’s night, consumers of Coffee Logs get an energy boost for themselves and their fires. These compact, sustainable fire logs made of spent coffee grounds are designed for use in wood burners and multi-fuel stoves and are the perfect fuel for heating your home with minimal climate impact.

Coffee Logs, as with all bio-bean products, contribute to a circular economy and they extend the life of spent coffee to use at home, displacing the need for fossil fuels like coal or for wood imported from other countries.

And just like our coffee pellets, Coffee Logs have a high caloric content, making Coffee Logs burn 20% hotter and longer than kiln-dried wood. Depending on your appliance efficiency and airflow, this equates to an average burn time of around one hour.

Keep an eye out for Coffee Logs online or at your local supermarket, DIY retailer or garden centre. For a full stockist list and to find out more, head to our Coffee Logs website.

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If you’re interested in learning more about what we do with spent coffee grounds, read our What is bio-bean Naturals? and What is bio-bean Renewals? blog posts.