German toilet paper maker Hakle is turning to waste from coffee production to stay afloat and help the environment, reported Manila Times. Two years ago, at the height of the coronavirus pandemic, the firm profited from a huge demand in essentials - such as toilet paper. But with the health crisis abating, Russia's invasion of Ukraine has sparked skyrocketing energy costs, forcing Hakle to file for insolvency recently. It has therefore turned to innovative solution.
Huge quantities of coffee grounds are produced every year by the European food industry, and Hakle has found a way to transform the waste into material to make loo roll.
The first rolls using the new process were produced at the Duesseldorf-based company's factory last week, Hakle's chief marketing officer Karen Jung told Agence France-Presse (AFP). "The goal is 20 to 25%" of coffee grounds constituting the material for making the paper, replacing wood pulp, said Jung, adding the company was working toward reaching those levels.
"That does not sound like a lot — but it means that a quarter fewer trees have to be used," added Jung, whose company entered insolvency proceedings in September due to surging energy costs.
Hakle sees a strong economic case. The price of wood pulp — which is in high demand in China, the world's biggest consumer — has risen rapidly since 2020.