Written by JulieReading time 3 min
Small capsules from famous brand Nespresso® have become a regular feature in our everyday life and our bins. Almost a billion capsules are consumed and disposed of in the UK each year. These aluminium capsules end up in landfills but also in rivers and oceans around the world. The single-serving coffee capsules have made life easier : they are simple to use, convenient and quick so no wonder they have become so popular. They can be used at home, in the office with a machine and now even on the go thanks to Nespresso®-compatible travel coffee makers. But the real worry is what the capsules are made of : aluminium! What can you recycle? Here is a little explanation.
Why choose aluminium?
Aluminium is the preferred material for making capsules because it is great at preserving coffee and all its aromas. Light and convenient to produce, aluminium is the material most adapted for coffee capsules. Nespresso® owes a good part of its success to this light aluminium.
How can I recycle my aluminium Nespresso® capsules?
Because of all the waste created by their capsules, Nespresso® has set up collection points so you can return your used capsules. At home, you can throw your used capsules in your standard home recycling bin. The coffee grounds can be used in your compost bin. However, if you are using Nespresso®-compatible capsules made of plastic with an aluminium foil, you will need to recycle each material accordingly. Unfortunately, all the capsules are not all recycled. That’s because many councils are not equipped yet to deal with light aluminium. It is a complex and expensive process. Therefore, it is currently best to recycle your Nespresso® capsules in one of the official points designated by the brand. Nespresso® can also collect your used capsules at home. You just need to go on their website and organise it all. There is no excuse now.
The alternative: Compostable & Biodegradable
Because most of us understand the situation is critical for our planet, some brands have listened to consummers and developed new capsules, all compatible with Nespresso® machines. These eco-friendly capsules are made with sustainable ecological materials. They are compostable and biodegradable! What a great idea!!! The launch wasn’t smooth at first because of compatibility worries from customers. However, these capsules are fully compatible with all Nespresso® capsule machines (the ones that take traditional, original Nespresso® capsules). These new biodegradable / compostable capsules are made of sugar cane, corn or even PLA (a biodegradable plastic). Ground coffee contained in biodegradable / compostable capsules is usually organic coffee so you can heal the planet and do yourself some good too! On MaxiCoffee.com, you will find brands offering biodegradable / compostable capsules like Oquendo, TerraMoka & Vergnano.
Reusable capsules are now a new option on the market for Nespresso® compatible capsules, they have 2 distinctive advantages:
- Reusable plastic capsules: you can use the same capsule over and over again. Just recycle the aluminium foil accordingly. A simple and convenient system to reduce waste!
- Use your favourite coffee: You are now in charge! You can refill your capsule with ground coffee picked by you and you only! If you have a coffee grinder, even better! You will know for sure your coffee is fresh and the resulting cup will taste even better!
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