We drink 500 billion cups of coffee globally each year. Think of how many coffee grounds that entails—and how many of those grounds end up in a landfill.
German designer Julian Lechner has invented a new strategy for keeping grounds out of the trash. Over the past five years, he has perfected a formula to turn coffee grounds into a hard material that can be crafted into cups. Those, in turn, can be used to drink more coffee.
Lechner calls his line of espresso cups and saucers Kaffeeform. The cups are made from grounds Lechner collects from Berlin cafes. He mixes the grounds with natural glues and sustainably sourced wood particles to create a liquid that can be injection-molded into new cups. The final cups can be used the way you’d use any standard ceramic or glass coffee mug—Lechner says they’re dishwasher-safe—and they even retain the smell of coffee.
Kaffeeform is currently on display at the Amsterdam Coffee Festival. The cups can be purchased online for your favorite coffee lover: it’s $27.50 for one cup and saucer, $44 for a pair and $77 for a set of four.