Hey There! Looking to use the most "Eco-friendly" coffee bags for our roasted beans, any tips where to find the best place to buy would be great!
Thanks,
Kim

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Not sure if it's more eco-friendly to have a fully recyclable (energy required for recycling processes and transportation) or fully compostable bag (energy required to transport it to composting facility, and the Carbon Dioxide from the composting process), but the most eco-friendly thing would be to sell a reusable container that customers would bring back for refilling (at a discount?). Also, with fully compostable kraft bags, whole beans stale more quickly than in a plastic valve bag. I don't know of any fully compostable cellulose-plastic bags (nor of any with valves).

Pacific Bag may be able to help you out.
(I have no stake in Pacific Bag Co.)
That's a great idea..Thanks!!
We've struggled for years trying to find the most eco friendly option, including recycling of foil bags. Kraft paper bags are the best for this since they are recyclable and compostable once the the tin tie is removed and they're inexpensive to buy. Unfortunately kraft bags are by far the least protective in assuring coffee freshness. If you know that your coffee will be consumed with in a week or less of being roasted or can be placed in an alternate air tight container right away, kraft bags are a reasonable choice.

We've done tests with coffee from the same batch with one sample packed in a foil bag and one in a kraft bag. Even after two weeks on the shelf there was a noticeable freshness quality difference between the two. After four weeks the coffee in the paper bag was hardly worth drinking but the foil bag sample was still quite viable.
We try not to let our coffee sit this far out regardless of how it's packed, but it's nice to know that it's being protected as much as possible.

The problem with recycling foil bags is that they consist of multiple different layers of material that would all have to be separated in order to recycle them. There are no recycling companies that do that unfortunately.

I agree with Will about Pacific Bag. We used Pack Plus for many years with good success, but they could never explain options in regards to recycling.
Justin at Pacific Bag has been the most knowledgeable person we've talked with about bags and due to that have chosen to buy our bags from them. Unfortunately the answer was still what we expected in that foil bags cannot be recycled.
Check out the EarthFirst ingeo bags. they are made from plants with a PLA film and are fully compostable (minus the tie). The bag itself is also made of 40% recycled paper.

@ Will - true on the recycling aspects but we have found composting our own stuff to be a good way of taking care of waste...we also add the coffee grounds we use, the local farmers love to get ahold of this stuff as it will expediate the composting process at home and on the farm...
This year's Roast Magazine Micro Roaster of the Year -Conscious Coffees uses steel cans. http://bit.ly/bQJwRV Perhaps as a startup in an eco conscious town you could consider this.


Sterling Coffee Roasters in Portland Ore. has a cool deal; they have two sizes of glass jars they sell coffee in, (pictured is the larger one.) They charge $15/$12 for your first jar, then when you bring it back they charge $12/$9 for a refill (or something around those lines.) I think they sourced them from a supplier who distributes to German picklers, and found a machine to screen print their logo on. If you're interested, I'm sure they'd love to tell you more.

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Portland-OR/Sterling-Coffee-Roasters/...

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