Sustainability

zero waste coffee

By May 9, 2019 May 14th, 2019 No Comments

We have a saying at ecogrounds—space for waste is wasted space. That’s why we develop materials that are easily diverted from landfills. From our certified coffees to our compostable paper cups, we take responsibility for everything bearing the ecogrounds logo. We know how hard some items can be to divert from landfill, but as a manufacturer, it’s on us to solve these challenges.

On our quest to make coffee without waste, one item stopped us dead in our tracks— our entire operation is dependent on it. It’s the coffee bag. Take a good look at the bags protecting your coffee. They might look like they’re made of foil, or plastic, or even craft paper, but you won’t find a recycling symbol. These bags are made of several materials bonded together to create an airtight seal, preventing exposure to light, air, and moisture. These bonded layers can’t be separated or reprocessed into anything new. They’re just trash. And since we roast millions of pounds of coffee each year, our decision to make a better package can keep a lot of waste from ever reaching landfill. But we can’t do it without help.

We met with half a dozen food film manufacturers and visited landfills and recycling centers to build a better bag. These experts helped us to identify a material that maintains our flavor-first-quality-standards and can be easily recycled. But there is still a significant hurdle to keeping our film from landfill, and it’s all the other roasters’ coffee bags. At eighty-five feet per minute, our recyclable coffee bag looks just like everyone else’s. It’s nearly impossible to separate out our bags on the sorting line.  The only way to ensure that our bag is never accidently sent to landfill is to never let it enter the waste stream. That’s why we printed a return label right on our bags. Fold it, mail it, recycle/repeat.

When you to return the bags to us, we bale them and take it to the recycler, presorted and ready for reprocessing. Whether you’re buying one bag at time to brew your coffee at home, or hundreds of pounds a week to serve your college campus, we make it easy to do the right thing.

ecogrounds recyclable bags are launching late summer 2019.