Two Scottish entrepreneurs are aiming to go global with their hope to replace palm oil using coffee waste.
These two Scottish entrepreneurs are being hailed for developing a new process that could spell the end for unsustainable palm oil.
Scott Kennedy and Fergus Moore are honing a chemical technique that extracts oils from used coffee grounds.
The young men first got the idea to use coffee waste oil when they were working in cafés during their time in college.
According to the duo, the bulk of café waste is made up of used coffee grounds. In the UK alone, used coffee grounds collectively add up to about half a million tons of landfill waste every year.
Mr Kennedy and Mr Moore came up with their idea while working in coffee shops during their time studying business at Glasgow’s Strathclyde university, and saw first-hand the amount of food waste in the hospitality industry.
So rather than letting all of those grounds go to waste, they developed a method of using the coffee ground oil as a substitute for palm oil.
“There are oils in coffee with a wide range of uses in different industries – cosmetics pharmaceuticals, food and drink, household products – you name it, there’s probably a use there,” Moore told BBC. “The most exciting part for us is that they have all the same components as palm.”
“We’re developing a process to extract and purify these oils.”
“Palm oil’s in the news for all the wrong reasons. It’s really exciting for us that we could potentially provide a local and more sustainable alternative to all the industries that are currently using palm oil.”
Since palm oil has been linked to deforestation, the prosecution of native people, dangerous sources of greenhouse gas emissions, and the destruction of wildlife habitats, food and cosmetic have been coming under increasing pressure to ditch palm oil from their ingredients lists.
Moore and Kennedy started the Revive Eco startup company to begin implementing their procedure in Scotland, and they already have plans to start expanding into additional European cities.
Not only that, the company has been selected to represent Scotland and Ireland in the 2019 Chivas Venture competition.
Revive Eco is just as one of 20 global initiatives competing for the $1 million prize money. Readers have until April 30th to vote for Revive Eco as the winner.