|School:||Georgia Institute of Technology|
|Team:||Haley Gruensfelder, Daniel Vandersteen, Nihar Parekh, Sarah Harris|
Comparable to corrugated carriers, coffee grounds are only used once and then discarded after being processed, packaged, and shipped. Millions of tons of corrugated paperboard and spent coffee grounds end up in landfills every year, wasting potential for these materials to be used to their full utility. Design Unconfined design group chose WestRock’s challenge #1, which required the team to generate a repurposed solution to utilize corrugated carriers. We developed a solution to give means and incentives to customers for further use of both byproducts in the home and inspire to live a more sustainably minded life.
While doing field research, two separate customers approached our group unprompted to recommend a particular kind of coffee offered in the Costco Wholesale store. In those moments, our direction became clear to serve these loyal customers.
Our countertop coffee grounds bin, Grounded, gives customers agency to be more sustainable by saving and reusing everyday materials. The bin pattern can be printed and perforated onto most existing corrugated carriers that customers pick up at club stores. Once cut and separated from the carrier, a system of strategic folds, clasps, tabs, and slots make construction easy and without the need for adhesive. Empty coffee bean bags act as bin liners, so no coffee grounds go to waste. With stout walls connected to a flat base, the bin is rigid enough to withstand the firm taps to clear an espresso machine’s portafilter.
Secured shut at the front, the folded flap opening cover paired with a 90-degree vertical back gives the Grounded bin an unobtrusive presence on a busy countertop. When full, the bag of spent coffee grounds is removed from the bin and repurposed for a variety of applications such as a natural cleaning scrub, composting, fertilizing, neutralizing odors, and more. This allows the user to reuse all the byproducts of brewing their favorite morning elixir and their weekly shopping trip.
Get more out of your food waste and get more out of your packaging. Get more Grounded.