Compostable and Biodegradable Coffee Pods

Compostable and Biodegradable Coffee Pods - What's The Difference

There is some confusion and misinformation about what compostable means, so I’ve put together this blog to compare our new compostable pods with our old oxo-biodegradable ones.

Why the change?

When we launched in 2017, we found that the best technology available for an eco-friendly pod was the d2w oxo-biodegradable plastic technology. It could be recycled or treated as general waste. We knew many customers' habits were to just throw their pods straight into their general waste. Conventional plastics and aluminium can take up to 500 years to breakdown in landfill. In comparison, the oxo-biodegradable pod takes around 2 years for this to happen. We felt this was a much more eco-friendly breakdown duration that didn't require customers to change their habits.

With eco-friendly technology continuing to develop over the past few years, we have now chosen to switch over to an industrially compostable pod. For a detailed breakdown of the differences between each pod and how to dispose of them, see below:

New - Compostable Pods

Material: 100% natural biomass resin, which is a mixture of plant-based products 

Certification: Industrial compostable certified to European standards (pending Australian certification).

Lid: Aluminium foil to keep the coffee tasting fresh

Breakdown duration: 90 days (in industrial composting facility)

Compost Disposal

Check with your local council to see if they have a commercial composting facility. If they do, simply remove the lid of your pod, and throw them into your green waste bin and they’ll be taken to an industrial composting facility. Here, they will be exposed to high temperatures, different bacteria and also aerate the materials for sufficient oxidization in order for them to break down in approximately 90 days. You can then collect the foil lids and recycle them.  Roll a heap of lids together into a golf-sized ball as recycling systems don't pick up anything smaller than a bottle cap.

Our new pods can also go straight into landfill if compost isn't an option.

Original - Biodegradable Pods

Material: d2w oxo-biodegradable plastic technology

Certification: Symphony Environmental - certified to European Standards

Lid: Aluminium foil to keep the coffee tasting fresh

Breakdown duration: approx. 2 years in landfill

 

Bio Disposal

Designed to break down in landfill at an accelerated rate of around 2 years (excluding the foil lid). Not the perfect solution, but when comparing this to aluminium pods that take up to 500 years to break down, it's a much better alternative. 

They can also be recycled, you'll need to remove the foil lid and roll a heap of them together into a golf-sized ball as recycling systems don't pick up anything smaller than a bottle cap. Next, scoop the coffee grinds out. This can be used for your veggie patch, garden and home compost, or thrown into your green waste bin. Finally, your empty pod can be rinsed/dusted off and thrown into a larger recyclable plastic container (eg. milk bottle) and then into your recycling bin.

What's Next?

Our end goal has always been to provide the most eco-friendly pod, that can make a great-tasting coffee and be affordable to our customers. This goal is now to produce the first home compostable pod that is manufactured in Australia. We are currently developing our own mould for our pod design but Covid has provided many delays to its progress. Fingers crossed we can make our next move to a home compostable Australian manufactured pod in the next 12 months. 

QUESTIONS? QUERIES? WANNA SAY HEY?

Checkout our FAQs, send me an email at hello@urbanbrew.co or call us on 1800 875 495. We are happy to help!

Be happy,

Toby Strong (aka The Podfather)

Founder & Customer Happiness Specialist

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