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Rogers Family Launches 97% Biodegradable Single-Serve Coffee Product

Photo Credit: Rogers Family Company

Rogers Family Company says it has developed a single-serve coffee product that is 97 percent biodegradable.

The coffee company claims an estimated 9.1 billion single-serve coffee and drink cartridges – some 19 million cubic feet of waste – end up in U.S. landfills each year. According to the National Coffee Association, more than a tenth of U.S. households (12 percent) own single-cup coffee brewers, and that number is on the rise.

Rogers Family Company says it created the OneCup BIO to address this longstanding waste challenge and meet the demands of increasingly environmentally conscious consumers.

The OneCup BIO has the highest percentage of biodegradability of any single serve coffee, the company claims. While the filter is the product’s only non-biodegradable part, a forthcoming new mesh filter will render it waste-free.

The product is composed of bio-based material from renewable natural resources, including vegetable oil, various plant starches and tree by-products, and will degrade in an anaerobic environment. The OneCup BIO does not need sunlight or air to degrade and, if exposed to moisture, will biodegrade and not leave any measurable toxic residue.

"Coffee lovers can savor their single serve brew knowing that they're part of the solution instead of tossing one more thing into the landfill problem," said Rogers Family Company President Jon B. Rogers.

Rogers Family Company says the initial version of OneCup also revolutionized the single serve market in 2011 because it was the only product at that time to employ a unique fabric mesh filter rather than a plastic brewing chamber.

"We wanted to create a unique single serve coffee," said Vice President John W. Rogers. "We believe we hit a home run with our goals regarding taste and value based on great consumer response to OneCup. And while we reduced the environmental footprint with a product that had 30 to 35 percent less packaging than other single serve coffees, we felt that was not good enough."

"A good, convenient cup of coffee does not have to come at such a price to the environment," added Vice President Jim Rogers.

The Rogers Family Co. supplies "Fairly Traded" gourmet coffee and tea to customers nationwide through such brands/divisions as San Francisco Bay and The Organic Coffee Company.

Last month, socially conscious tea purveyor the Republic of Tea announced a new line of environmentally friendly, single-serve One Cuppa tea pods, that are 95 percent biodegradable and compatible with most single-serve coffee- and tea-brewing machines. The company says the pods became available on October 1.


Mike Hower is Marketing Communications Manager at Carbon Lighthouse. With a background on both sides of the communications podium — as a journalist and strategic communicator — he is committed to helping organizations address climate change through sustainability innovation. Previously,… [Read more about Mike Hower]


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