Design from the
Grounds Up

Let’s face it: the world runs on coffee. We consume more than 500 billion cups worldwide per year, which raises the question: where are those grounds going?  In Berlin designers are putting coffee grounds to work.

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In reaction to the worldwide addiction, German designer Julian Lechner repurposes the coffee grounds into solid material. The secret formula is a mixture of grounds, natural glues, and sustainably sourced wood that can be cast into cup and saucer molds. After five years of tinkering, Lechner’s company, Kaffeeform, proudly produces cups that are dish washer safe and sustainable. The cups even retain a subtle aroma from the grounds collected at Berlin cafes and coffee bars.

However, for those coffee junkies looking for another way to use old coffee grounds, look no further than the compost bin. In the garden, grounds add a nitrogen source for composting as well as repel slugs, snails, and neighborhood cats. Course grounds can also be used to exfoliate skin, freshen the fridge, and clean ashtrays.

You don’t have to be a designer to reduce your landfill load but these cups could be a game changer in  cafes around the world.Most importantly you can feel good about getting your kick in the morning. Check out their journey here.

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