Seattle composting facility accepts compostable coffee pods

Seattle composting facility accepts compostable coffee pods

Club Coffee’s PurPod100™ is currently the only single-serve coffee pod accepted at Cedar Grove Composting’s facilities.

November 9, 2016
Recycling Today Staff
Certification Equipment & Products

Toronto-based Club Coffee has announced that Cedar Grove Composting is accepting only 100-percent-compostable single-serve coffee pods from its Seattle-based headquarters and commercial customers in addition to its list of other acceptable materials.

Cedar Grove will continue to accept a range of packaging materials used for reusable food service items, from clamshell boxes to take-out containers. Most of the containers Cedar Groves accepts are made with corn-based or paper materials. However, regarding single-serve coffee pods, the company will accept only 100-percent-compostable single-serve coffee pods.

Club Coffee manufactures the PurPod100, the world’s first certified 100-percent-compostable single-serve pod for coffee, tea and other hot beverages.

Club Coffee CEO John Pigott hailed the decision, saying, “This is a major step forward in making 100-percent-compostable pods the clear choice for people who want quality coffee and single-serve convenience without the waste of conventional plastic pods. It is a testimonial to Cedar Grove’s leadership in green innovation for composting and organics recycling.”

Club Coffee supported Cedar Grove’s tracking of compostable pods in Seattle workplaces at the University of Washington, Columbia Tower and University Tower. The study determined that accepting the compostable pods was positive for the overall collection of food scraps and did not lead to problems with noncompostable items, such as plastic single-serve pods, creamers and stir sticks.

Cedar Grove’s compostability expert Michele Riggs says that only brands in the certified-100-percent-compostable format are being accepted at the company’s facilities. 

Riggs says, “Brands that claim to be biodegradable or claim percentages like 95 percent or 97 percent won’t work in our processes. It’s very simple: if it is not certified 100 percent compostable, it doesn’t work for our program.” 

Cedar Grove lists items it accepts from its commercial customers at

Club Coffee’s Pigott adds, “Workplaces serviced by Cedar Grove can use single-serve P?rPod100 brands such as Hills Bros., Chock Full o’Nuts, Kauai Coffee, Ethical Bean, Boyd’s, Juan Valdez and Tayst and put the pods into their office food scrap recycling programs.”

In September 2015 Club Coffee announced it had earned Biodegradable Products Institute (BPI) certification for the PurPod100. BPI certification requires that products be tested in approved independent laboratories and then be independently verified according to ASTM D6400 and D6868s standards. 

Certification by the BPI confirms that the PurPod100 is “industrially compostable,” meaning that it fully breaks down in commercial composting processes.

“Coffee lovers can see the 100 percent composting certification right on the carton. And we are exploring ways together to get the certified 100 percent compostable pods into food waste recycling at home,” says Pigott.

Cedar Grove Composting is a family-owned business with roots in the Seattle area dating back to 1938. The company says it plays a critical role in the Puget Sound’s recycling infrastructure and sustainability efforts, diverting more than 350,000 tons of yard waste and food scraps from landfills annually. With two processing facilities in Maple Valley and Everett, Washington, Cedar Grove says it is a local manufacturer providing green jobs in King and Snohomish Counties. Cedar Grove produces nutrient-rich compost that is sold to businesses, governments and residents, ensuring consumers have access to locally produced, recycled products.