Keurig K-Cup recycling programme that turns waste coffee pods into cement looks to expand

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Canada: A British Colombia programme that recycles Keurig coffee K-Cups into cement has been so successful that it may expand into Alberta. The Lafarge cement plant in Kamloops, British Colombia, Canada used about 1.4m K-Cups as ash in its cement in 2014 after teaming up with Van Houtte Coffee Services, which collects the used pods for recycling.

"I think we've been fairly successful here," said Eric Isenor, the Lafarge Kamlooops plant manager. "Van Houtte is happy with the programme so far and is looking to expand." He added that the company might start collecting the used pods in Alberta, Canada for recycling in British Colombia.

The single-serving coffee pods are not recyclable because they are a mixture of materials coffee grounds, a paper filter, plastic cup and foil top that cannot be efficiently separated. After collecting the used coffee pods, Van Houtte, a coffee service that delivers supplies to offices and retailers around Kamloops, brings them in large bins to the Lafarge cement plant for processing. The pods are dried out, shredded and heated to 2000°C to form ash, which is then used for cement production.

Last modified on 25 March 2015


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