Coffee is one of the oldest commodities in India. We have very different relationships with out cups of coffee, as a majority chai-drinking nation. But there’s very little that is explored or known about the circularity of coffee.
As part of our WHO FEEDS BLR meet-up, we set out to explore coffee and waste with a few experts who work with coffee waste in their own capacities.
To understand more about coffee and know why the waste of a commodity like coffee needs serious consideration, look into The Circular Collective’s resource: https://www.thecircularcollective.com/the-coffee-miners-project
Some important snippets from the conversation:
Rahul Sharma, the head chef of Araku Coffee, Bangalore spoke about how they use cascara and coffee flour in various desserts like their bonbons. Or like a soft serve with their affogato. An interesting use of coffee flour was also as a marmite-like glaze on their chicken dish which they term as “coffeemite”.
Khushboo Gandhi, a material scientist who runs Go Do Good, a studio working at the interface of science, design thinking & sustainability to create new materials, packaging, and conduct spoke about their work in upcycling coffee grounds for different purposes and her exploration into using coffee for bioplastics.
Pallav Patodia, an entrepreneur who runs Sansadhan Green Tech which is developing a tableware product made from coffee ground waste, showcase prototypes of their tableware which they aim to launch towards the mid of 2021.
With this context set from different people from the industry, we set out to understanding the coffee value chain at a broader level.
While some parts of the value chain of coffee are discussed and spoken about a lot more, understanding where what waste is generated and studying examples of products/innovations at each step helps in making sure the innovations we come up with are more holistic and adds value to each stakeholder in the chain.
With this in mind, we broke out into groups to brainstorm on more such innovations that could be wild and help in repurposing coffee.
Some of the interesting innovations that came up in the mash-up session:
- Coffee grounds based mosquito repellant
- A perfume using low quality beans
- Flavour enhancer syrups / liquids
- Coffee flour snacks & pasta
- Coffee processors using silver skins to make cloth/paper
While there’s a long way to go for coffee circularity in India, hearing from the experts and also discussing potential ideas makes us believe that we’ve barely scratched the surface!
If you’d like to catch the first half of the discussion, head here 👇
Would you like to connect & collaborate with other across the circular coffee value chain in India?
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