Hydal Coffee: cascade recycling of spent coffee grounds and coffee capsules
How many times have you been told you drink too much coffee?
The world seems at times to run on coffee - and this results in plenty of used coffee grounds. Hydal Coffee has found a way to make full use of this plentiful organic waste stream.
The NAFIGATE Corporation has developed a cascade recycling system for coffee grounds that uses 100% of this abundant bio-waste. Hydal Coffee produces secondary products which are used in cosmetic products, masterbatches (concentrated pigments used to dye plastics) and final plastic products.
Hydal Coffee has established partnerships with large producers of coffee grounds. Its parent company, the NAFIGATE Corporation, then takes those secondary products and uses them to manufacture soaps, hand creams, coffee oil and biomass, as well as components in the production of plastic products.
The second cascade deals with recycling coffee capsules. The packaging is recycled and the spent coffee grounds are used to replace the natural material - wood - in heating briquettes. A Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) has been carried out for the concept, and the final products are certified and are already being sold. The concept is based on circular economy and design for recycling principles.
The primary processing and subsequent industrial processing of coffee produces secondary raw materials. The main one is used coffee grounds. As this raw material contains a large amount of valuable organic substances (the fatty acids which are components of coffee oil, together with various antioxidants, phenolics and brown dyes, lignin, cellulose, hemicelluloses, other polysaccharides, minerals and caffeine), it is a pity to dismiss it as waste.
There are three levels of cascade recycling of spent coffee grounds:
- coffee oil and cosmetics products which use coffee oil
- masterbatches and final plastic products.
There are also two levels of cascade recycling of coffee capsules:
- recycling of packaging materials
- replacement of virgin wood in briquettes.