Cycling and exercising outdoor is at our core and brings awareness of the world around us. It shapes our identity, who we are and how other people should see us. But it also brings responsibility to maintain and even improve our playground. This is not a typical story where we tell you how great we are doing as a green and sustainable company. This is a story where we share our challenges with you and how we are learning and improving by the day.
Our goal is to become a leading example in the coffee industry (and beyond) concerning planet conscious decisions in our company processes. As we built our business from scratch, we are rebuilding it again to protect our playground. And we will need your help in doing so!
We have defined several areas where we are going to work on and also to put focus and accountability towards our customers and stakeholders.
These areas are:
FAIR PRICING FOR THE FARMERS
We work with larger trading companies that operate from Antwerp (Sucafina) or Hamburg harbors but are increasing our direct trade connections with the farmers. Target is to have all our coffee from direct trade in the coming years. We already buy coffee together with some others roasters directly at the farmer so we can maintain a good price for their work and have an impact on their conditions of living. Also visiting these farmers bring feedback from our side to them to improve their products. We already have implemented many changes at origin like re-using the coffee pulp to fertilize the lands and stop using pesticides for growing coffee.
CO2-NEUTRAL ROASTING PROCESS
Roasting coffee consumes a lot of energy to bring the green beans to their delightful brown fase. We calculated that we expel 5,8KG CO2 per 1KG of coffee. We cannot compensate that fully at our source so we are using indirect sources to compensate this CO2 emission. We started working with the Climate Neutral Group and invest Euro 9,45 per ton CO2 emission in reducing deforestation and protecting biodiversity of forests in the Brazil amazon area. We also invest in efficient cookstoves in Uganda to reduce their CO2 emissions.
SMART PACKAGING SOLUTIONS - END LANDFILL WASTE
As are in a food business the main concern in that industry has always been: maximum preservation of the product for human consumption. We are changing that towards guaranteed freshness without harming the planet and still make the best product possible.
Coffee bags: We still have a way to go here as the majority of our coffee bags contain a aluminum film on the inside. This is definitely a no-go and we changed the packaging of our coffee capsules to fully recyclable plastic bags. We feel we need to take one step further here and are thinking of solutions.
Coffee Capsules: We used biodegradable coffee capsules before these need industrial composting facilities that are not fit the compost the huge waste streams in European countries so the majority is still burned. Read our blog on the story behind our current WOODEN coffee capsules here.
Shipping boxes: We changed our bleached printed carton boxes to fully recyclable paper boxes and close these with paper tape instead of plastic printed tape.
Retail packaging: As our retail customers use much larger volumes on regularly base than webshop customers we are looking for a solution with plastic kegs that have a deposit system. That would save a huge amount of 1KG coffee bags overall.
Webshop deliveries: We deliver our webshop packages in The Netherlands by bike when possible. Our partner collects all packages on daily basis using a bio-gas fueled car and the packages are transported by bike from their national located hubs. Due to the density of The Netherlands that is a much more easy solution than in other countries. For these countries we use local delivery services. We are investigating more green solution for these deliveries like DHL GO Green.
Retail deliveries: We are currently delivering directly from our roastery towards our retail companies. We are testing a deposit system with plastic kegs that can be refilled after usage.
Physical Waste: We would like to let everybody bring their own cup or mug to event sites and venues but the truth is that is also not the most sustainable solution. As we need to put coffee in something for you to drink from we have been searching everywhere to find a decent solution as the current PLA containing cups are still containing plastics that will be burnt afterwards. We found a company (Monouso) that produces coffee cups made of 100% paper so no PLA coating. For now that seems the best way to reduce our plastic waste.
Transportation: As you all know we have a beautiful old Mercedes-Daimler coffee truck and you can imagine it is thirsty as hell. So we added a huge bio-gas tank beneath it to reduce our emission compared using the petrol tank. We drive a fully electric car for our business and retail visits.
As said we still are at the beginning of this transaction and we will need your help to achieve it. Let us know what we can do more and we will come back to your input for protecting our playground.