Trash | Recycle | Compost | Coffee grounds


Where’s the tipping point between diligence and annoyance?

This is one of the questions we’re investigating as part of our Fertile Grounds project. Would it seem burdensome to add one more container next to our recycle and waste bins? What if there were a bin for salvaging coffee grounds?

Coffee grounds are a valuable resource that can be put to good use (e.g., urban agriculture projects) rather than being trucked away to a compost facility or worse—to a landfill.

Unfortunately, sorting waste can sometimes be a major pain in the butt, so we are working to develop simple operational strategies that make it easy for coffee shops and carts to keep their coffee grounds clean enough to recycle. (By “clean” we mean free of food waste and/or paper products.)

After visiting coffee shops around Seattle to learn about their existing composting systems, we believe that creating a pain-free methodology for recycling grounds is actually easy to achieve. By employing a few simple design strategies when planning a coffee shop or cart, these nutrient-rich grounds can be recaptured and repurposed.

Curious to learn more? Follow our progress online over the next several months as we work to brand an urban food system process that is profitable, replicable, less wasteful, and less carbon intensive.

Or—better yet—contact us if you run a coffee business and would like to join in on the fun.

- Posted by Chris