The pleasure of drinking coffee does not have to generate waste. For this reason, Delta Coffee developed the ReThink project, which studies and rethinks the use to be made of coffee grinds, closing the cycle of this product with the lowest possible impact on the level of sustainability.

As a responsible brand, Delta Coffee is aware of its duty to help make the principles linked to sustainability of the planet an increasingly important factor in the choices made by consumers. Consumers themselves must be the engine driving a change in behaviour, and for this reason Delta developed a system of collection and use of the main waste from its industrial and sales activities. The ReThink project is a project created by Delta Coffee in the context of initiatives of Planet Delta, which aims to close the cycle of coffee. It is a project for investigation and use of waste produced by the activities of the company and by the consumption of coffee - i.e. coffee grinds. This is a the most holistic project in Portugal, as it analyses and strengthens the entire coffee cycle, including the consumer and the waste he generates, and it is an enormous source of added value.

The ReThink project aims to:

  • Evaluate the logistical system to create logistics for mass collection of capsules and coffee grinds;
  • Collect used capsules and coffee grinds;
  • Recycle plastic from the capsules;
  • Investigate the components of the grind and find out what can be extracted from this waste to create new products, in areas such as nutrition, cosmetics, biomass and bioenergy;
  • Study coffee machines and find out how they can be made more efficient.

The project was financed by QREN (National strategic reference framework) to the tune of € 2M, making it possible to establish partnerships with the Faculty of Science and Technology at the Universidade Nova de Lisboa, IBET (Institute of Experimental Biology and Technology) and UNIDEMI (Unit for Investigation and Development in Industrial Engineering); as well as Diverge Design, which has already been a partner on other projects. These partnerships will make it possible to create new research projects for our logistical systems and to study the components of coffee grinds - something which has never been done at European level.

For more information see the project website at