Our packaging is made from recyclable kraft paper with an inner lining of compostable plastic (PLA polylactic acid).
HOW TO DISPOSE OF DEAR GREEN PACKAGING
- Rip off the label and dispose in general waste
- Bag can be put in a compostable bin if not available then dispose of it into the general waste.
Here are some more facts to inform you of our packaging journey:
AIR TIGHT: Our coffee is Specialty Grade (high quality), seasonal and freshly roasted, we want our coffee to reach our customers in its best possible state which requires it to be airtight, packaged and sealed on the day it was roasted. If oxygen enters the bag, our coffee will stale quicker. If our bag is not airtight the Co2 expelled by the bean following the roasting process will leave the bag and allow oxygen to enter. Therefore if our bags are airtight our product will taste at its best as soon as the bag is opened and will have a longer shelf life. Due to this requirement our bags require a seal, a plastic solution is all that is currently available to us to achieve this.
COMPOSTABLE INNER: We have trialled home composting our packaging, but unfortunately our trial was not successful, fully home compostable packaging in the coffee packaging world is not available to us just yet. The compostable plastic we use is certified with Austrian, European certification standard (TÜV Austria OK COMPOST) and can be industrially composted. The compostable plastic material is also called PLA (polylactic acid) made with renewable energy and fully fossil fuel free. PLA is derived from corn starch or sugar cane. This is the best solution we can currently find,ensuring that the manufacturing is held to the minimum emissions.
UNDER REVIEW: We are constantly reviewing our packaging in order to find the best option. Part of this process has been calculating our full carbon footprint including the journey our packaging makes to us. We also have a reduction strategy which includes targets, such as zero waste to landfill. We plan to switch to a fully home compostable bag as soon as we have calculated that it will have the least impact. We recently surveyed our customers on this subject, hopefully you contributed to our research, via our newsletter.
NEW PRODUCT TRIAL: Our research has led us to a fully paper recyclable, UK manufactured packaging solution which we have tested and unfortunately found to not be satisfactory in terms of practicality and quality. Each trial requires us to order a minimum of 10,000 bags. Our trials continue.Our environmental survey showed that two thirds of our customers store their coffee in the Dear Green coffee bag, therefore one of our priorities will remain to keep the coffee as fresh as possible and believe that a resealable seal is necessary to ensure the coffee can be stored airtight. The next trial venture will be a compostable plastic or paper-based label.
COLLABORATION: We are in conversation with other roasters internationally who have identified the same problems as we are having. This is definitely and unfortunately an industry wide issue.
OTHER SOLUTIONS: We do not see a fully recyclable plastic bag as the right solution for us as we have targets to be plastic free. Recyclable single use plastic is not a responsible answer. We do not see a fullyreusable solution as the answer as the carbon emitted to manufacture a single use container is far greater than that used to manufacture a bag.
REUSABLE SOLUTIONS: We use reusable tubs for our local wholesale orders and in the last financial year alone we have saved an estimated up to 7000 bags from manufacture and landfill as a result of this initiative. We invite local customers to bring a reusable container to our roastery to collect their coffee in, encouraging a culture of reuse. Reuse undoubtedly is the only environmental answer to this conundrum, however there are barriers to implementing this fully. To continue to support the coffee farms we have worked with for over a decade and to have a sustainable business we must be realistic and practical and consider our dilemma holistically. We need to consider our entire supply chain. We want to find a solution which will allow us to continue to source, roast and supply great coffee for decades to come.
OUR IDEAL: Along with our reusable containers our ideal is: UK manufactured. Single-use plastic free. Certified home compostable or recyclable or made from recycled materials.We also offer a fully zero waste collection option directly from our roastery.Our pursuit continues…
TEAM EFFORT: We’re no experts and this is a journey, we wholeheartedly welcome your feedback.