UK's largest coffee chain partners to convert grounds into biofuel

Costa Coffee, the United Kingdom's largest coffee chain is partnering with biomass recycling firm Bio-bean to convert as much as 3,000 ton of waste coffee grounds a year in biofuel.

The grounds will be collected from 800 Costa shops across the UK and delivered to Bio-bean's facilities, where they will be used as feedstock for biofuels, solid-fuel coffee logs, and biochemicals.

In announcing the partnership on Tuesday, Costa Coffee Energy and Environment Manager Oliver Rosevear said the agreement would put "thousands of tons of Costa coffee grounds to work, transforming them from a waste material into sustainable, clean fuels which can heat homes this winter."

Bio-bean CEO Arthur Kay said the agreement makes sound environmental and fiscal sense, pointing that not only will Costa reduce its carbon footprint, but it will also save the company money.

"Where Costa have led we hope other companies can follow,” Kay said.

The Costa partnership builds on an initiative Bio-bean launched last year to provide heating to 15,000 homes in London using waste coffee beans collected from local coffee shops.

In related news, Cost announced this month that it is launching a nationwide recycling initiative across over 2,000 stores in order to recover and guarantee the recycling of its takeaway cups.

Competitor takeaway cups will also be accepted by Costa in order to increase the number of cups recycled across the country, the company said in a press release.

Customers will be encouraged to leave or return their takeaway cups to a Costa store where they will be collected by Costa team members and stored back of house on a cup rack.

Costa will then work with their waste partner, Veolia, to transport them to specialist waste processing plants which have the capability to recycle takeaway coffee cups.

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