It's a tough one. Your daily cup of coffee has quite a journey from the farm to (in most cases) your non-biodegradable takeaway cup. Do you bit and support the COP26 initiatives.
I was joking with a colleague about what sort of politician would start to tell their country(wo)men to stop drinking so much damn coffee! That's an manifesto pledge that you won't see any time soon.
So how do you link your carbon reducing passions with your growing coffee addiction? Here are some top tips straight off the bat!
1) Shop ethically and make sure your coffee arrives by container ship
Know your roaster. Where do they get their beans from? Do the importers support local climate reduction initiatives? Of course the coffee travels a long way. But in the large proportion of cases it travels by sea on huge ships. This has a really small co2 footprint compared to trucks or aeroplanes take a look at this:
Coffee farmers and importers of course have a vested interest in keeping emissions down. Great coffee grows at high altitudes - and with rising temperatures the 'great coffee growing zone' shrinks - making good coffee harder to find.
2) Shop locally and use coffee shops that use local roasters
Your local coffee shop should have no real reason to get their coffee from anywhere other than local roasters. There are enough of us! This reduces the distance travelled from the importers warehouse to your cup. For example, coffee arriving at the Port of Felixstowe travels about 50 miles up the a14 to a local warehouse. We're about 40 miles from that warehouse. We then deliver our coffee to local customers. Job done!
3) Waste not want not.
When you buy your beans, or buy a coffee - use it all! Don't waste your money on bad coffee or thrown away beans. Get your grinder set up right and you're good to go. Check out some dialling in videos.
And don't waste your time with bad coffee from coffee shops. Find something you like and make sure they make it consistently good.
4) Biodegradable or reusable
There's plenty of options for coffee shops to use biodegradable products. They are about twice the price of standard cups but it's worth it right? Recyclable takeaway cups aren't really viable as most customers will drop the coffee in the bin anyway and that's on its way to landfill. So for now look for biodegradable cups. Or, buy a reusable one! Once again plenty of options.
5) Check your coffee bean packaging
A lot of coffee bags aren't recyclable or biodegradable. Our subscription offer uses cardboard packaging with a biodegradable inner bag. Cardboard is easy to recycle and the inner sleeve doesn't last more than a year in the ground.
Thanks for reading - I'm sure I'll think of some more tips soon.