coffee pod FAQ’s
1. What are the pods made of?
- Over 90% of the total weight of a used pod is coffee grounds.
- The remaining 10% of the weight is composed of an integrated lid, mesh filter, and unique brown ring
made of coffee chaff, renewable resources and other compostable materials. 95% of the filter is
- Together the pod has earned approval as Certified 100% Compostable.
2. What does plant-based material mean?
- Substances from various plants are extracted and processed to help create the raw material for the pod.
3. What is coffee chaff?
- The natural skin of the coffee bean that comes off during the roasting process, like the skin of a peanut.
4. What is the period of time it takes for the pod to compost?
- The Biodegradable Products Institute certifies that these pods break down in less than 84 days under
commercial composting conditions.
5. Are the pods backyard compostable?
- There is no North American certification process in place to give consumers guidance on backyard
composting. Composting experts know that individual results vary widely so we cannot make a blanket
statement about how these pods will work in your own home composting environment. Your results will
vary depending on conditions that include: local temperatures; the other items being composted; and
the humidity, both in the air and in the compost pile. If you currently compost cornhusks at home, you
may find that composting our pods is similar.
- Please see our composting page for further information on this.
6. Is the inner foil bag compostable or recyclable?
- Unfortunately, not yet. While this bag guarantees freshness and food safety, we are working on a better, compostable solution. Please stay tuned to this page for updates.
- The inner bag has to meet challenging tests to ensure that it protects coffee from oxygen so consumers
get the freshness and quality they expect.
- In the meantime, the inner foil bag is accepted through our coffee bag return program where they get recycled through a unique program with TerraCycle. Send in 12 empty bags, and get a free box of pods or bag of Ethical Bean Coffee! More details here.
7. Is the cardboard box made from post-consumer fibre?
- The cardboard box is made from 100% recycled fiber with up to 65% post-consumer content. We ask
that you please recycle it.
8. How do you make a pod?
- A highly automated process puts the lids, rings and mesh filter together to form the pod and then places the precise amount of Ethical Bean coffee needed into each pod.
9. What is a municipal composting facility?
- There are different kinds of municipal composting facilities. Typically, they receive food, leaf and yard waste either from curbside pickup or that people drop off directly. Those facilities take the waste and put it through processes to break it down. Many facilities turn the waste into compost that can be used to enrich soil for agriculture and gardening. Some put it through processes to extract biogases to meet
10. Can you put the pods in all municipal composting systems?
- These pods are 100% BPI Certified Compostable for typical curbside composting processes that many
municipalities use. However, municipalities have their own guidelines for what they accept as being compostable and may not automatically accept new products. We are working with municipalities across NA to educate them and gain acceptance.
11. What do you do with the pods if your city doesn’t compost?
- Please see our composting page for further information that includes information about backyard
composting and the tests that are currently underway across Canada and the US.