Zero Waste Coffee
With the sheer volume of coffee that is consumed, there is the potential for a great deal of waste. What is the industry doing to mitigate this waste and how can you make a difference at home?
What's cascara? Cascara is the leftover pulp from when the coffee bean is extracted from the cherry. It is the by-product of coffee processing. It may seem surprising, but cascara was once considered waste and is now a much desired commodity. Cascara is steeped into a tea. It can be prepared like coffee, either hot or cold brew. Some companies have converted the cascara into a gluten-free flour which can be used just like wheat flour.
Commercial Use of Used Grounds
Companies have been finding ways to utilize coffee grounds and have been quite innovative. These companies have begun collecting used grounds from cafes and convert these grounds into a bio-fuel. You might have seen an example of this with the coffee logs sold alongside other fire logs. Other companies have begun using spent coffee grounds in construction including paving. In the arts, creative companies have learned how to use spent grounds in ink-making.
A great deal of water is used, not only in the growing of coffee, but also the processing of coffee. Fully washed and semi-washed coffee can use up to 20 cubic meters of water. Once the coffee is washed, the water, known as coffee effluent, contains a great deal of organic manner - pulp and mucilage (the papery skin on the beans). Processing companies are beginning to reduce the amount of water used by reusing water to wash multiple batches. In addition, they're also starting to filter organic material from the water used.
How Can You Make A Difference?
You can also make a difference in reducing the amount of waste when it comes to enjoying your coffee.
1. When drinking coffee from your favorite coffee shop, bring along your own travel coffee mug. In addition to reducing the amount of waste, you might even save a little money.
2. Consider purchasing your coffee in bulk. Our 5-pound bags mean less packaging waste along with less fuel usage.
3. When enjoying your single-serve coffee at home, use a reusable coffee pod and filter like one of the following:
4. Using recyclable coffee pods is another way to reduce waste. Each of our freshly roasted single-serve coffee pods is fully recyclable and delicious as well!
5. Consider using your used coffee grounds around the house. They're great for composting, cleaning, and even for body scrubs and a hair rinse.
6. Drinking Fair-Trade and Organic coffees is an unconventional way to make a difference. With the use of natural pesticides and fertilizers, the land is kept healthy and there is less land waste.
Enjoying your daily coffee doesn't have to create a lot of waste. Little steps here and there can make a big difference.