Picture this: you’re sitting at your favourite café, savouring the rich aroma of a freshly brewed cup of coffee. As you sip this comforting elixir, have you ever wondered about the journey coffee takes beyond your cup?
Coffee Industry in India
In the heart of India’s bustling cities, coffee culture is thriving. In recent years, India has witnessed an unprecedented surge in coffee consumption. This surge can be attributed to the shifting culture. As cafes and coffee chains grow nationwide, coffee has become more than just a beverage; it’s an experience. With an annual consumption rate exceeding 100,000 metric tons, it’s no surprise that coffee shops have become more than places to grab a caffeine fix.
Figure 1: Brewed Coffee
The café culture has evolved into a social phenomenon, drawing in a younger, more diverse demographic. However, the hidden impact behind this vibrant industry is a secret few know about — mountains of spent coffee grounds.
Spent Coffee Grounds
Spent coffee grounds (SCG) are the residue from brewing when coffee is treated with hot water or steam. Research suggests that only 30% of the coffee’s benefits are extracted during this process. About 70% remains in the SCG, currently considered waste and disposed of in landfills.
Figure 2: Spent Coffee Grounds
With every cup of coffee brewed generating up to 20 gms of SCG, India alone generates approximately 98,000 tonnes of SCG annually. When these end up in landfills, they decompose in the anaerobic environment to generate methane and carbon dioxide, which traps heat in the earth’s atmosphere, causing global warming and climate change.
Tapping the untapped
We at The Bean Loop saw an opportunity in this to reimagine the skincare routine. These residues are rich in antioxidants, which actively combat the harmful effects of free radicals, contributing to healthier skin. Moreover, their gentle exfoliating properties help remove dead skin cells, revealing a fresh, radiant complexion. We combine the magic of upcycled coffee residue with powder-based formulations to create skincare products that are effective and environmentally responsible.
Figure 3 – A powder-based skin care product with upcycled coffee residue
Our process starts at cafes where the coffee residue is collected. These are brought to the warehouse, pre-processed and brought into production to formulate the final skincare products’ Powdered, Potent & Planet-friendly’. We have diverted and utilised 20+ kgs of spent coffee grounds in our formulations to date.
Figure 4: Our Process
In essence, by using upcycled coffee residue in our products, we are not only diverting it from landfills but also minimising our ecological footprint by reducing the use of virgin raw materials. Additionally, the powder-based formulations are designed for convenience and effectiveness. By eliminating water from our products, we lower the shipping weights, making it travel-friendly and minimising packaging waste. This is skincare reimagined. We support 6 of the 17 SDGs, including SDG 11, SDG 12, SDG 13, SDG 14, SDG 15 & SDG 17.
Unlock radiant skin with your Morning Coffee
You start your day with that perfect cup of coffee brewed at home. But as your coffee filter or machine works magic, it leaves behind coffee grounds – a daily residue.
Figure 5: Our Products – Espresso Lather (Powder-Handwash) and Aqua Bloom – (Powder – Bodywash)
Here’s the twist: instead of tossing those grounds away, you can transform them into a spa-like skincare ritual with The Bean Loop’s Blend & Glow – DIY Body Scrub kit. It’s the secret ingredient for radiant, refreshed, and guilt-free sips.
Figure 6: Blend & Glow – DIY Body Scrub kit
So, sip your coffee and wear it too.
About the Founder
Saravana Kumaran, a climate entrepreneur, has authored this article. While his background may be rooted in technology and management, his true passion lies in positively impacting our planet and its people through Design Thinking, Innovation and Green Entrepreneurship. His work areas include managing organic by-products sustainably and educating and engaging with students to raise awareness about the climate crisis. He believes that working together can create a better future for our world.