January 17, 2023 3 min read

Sustainability and being more eco-conscious have moved higher up on people’s lists of priorities. A 2020 study found that 74 % of people surveyed wanted to significantly reduce their impact on the environment, with 78% also wanting to reduce their food wastage. We hear it all the time – reduce your footprint – but how? And what does this have to do with coffee?

Coffee and the climate

We all love coffee – and while the magic bean is fabulous in so many ways, when anything is chucked into landfill in mass quantities it causes the planet some problems. That’s tricky when you want to reduce your impact on the planet but love coffee.

The good news though is that you can do something about it…

Clearly, buying ethical Fairtrade coffees with people-friendly and eco-friendly credentials is the best place to start when it comes to doing your bit for sustainability. But what if we told you that you could use your love of coffee to help the environment further by recycling your grounds too?

Yes that’s right, the king of all beans is good for more than just sipping…

How to recycle your used coffee grounds

Here’s our list of 10 ways you can reduce your impact on the planet and give your coffee beans a new lease of life in 2022…

  1. Make sure to properly compost your grounds instead of sending them to landfill.
  2. Want to grow your own produce? Use your grounds as a bed for mushroom plantation – a 2-in-1 for environmental win!
  3. Looking to spice up your beauty regime? Use the grounds in a facemask or as a scrub.
  4. Scour your pots and pans – the coarse texture of coffee grounds is great for this – they’ll be sparkling in no time.
  5. Nurture your garden. Coffee grounds attract worms and micro-organisms -great for plant growth.
  6. Icy outside? Use your coffee grounds in place of sand to stop slipping – they’re excellent for this.
  7. Repair scratches in wooden furniture - Simply mix the used coffee grounds together with 1/4 cup warm water, and 1/4 cup vinegar to create a stain that naturally fixes scrapes.
  8. Got plants that need good filtration in their soil? You guessed it – coffee grounds. They help to improve drainage, water retention and aeration.
  9. Something smelling funky? Use your grounds to neutralise odours. Coffee contains nitrogen so it’s great at absorbing odours. Pop an open container of used coffee grounds in the fridge to diffuse any whiffs from your leftover Christmas cheese.
  10. Insect problem? You guessed it – coffee grounds! Insects like mosquito's and fruit flies hate the smell of it and certain compounds in the grounds are toxic so they avoid them like the plague! Simply place the grounds in a bowl where you’ve got the insect problem and burn them as you would incense to repel those little pests.

And there you have it. While repurposing your used coffee grounds isn’t going to stop climate change in its tracks, it’s a great place to start with lessening your impact while still getting to enjoy your delicious brews in the process.

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