University of Guelph’s eco-friendly cutlery to be used in fast food stores

University of Guelph’s eco-friendly cutlery to be used in fast food stores
University of Guelph’s eco-friendly cutlery to be used in fast food stores

Researchers at the University of Guelph have developed an eco-friendly cutlery that will soon be available at fast food chains across Canada.

One of the key ingredients is coffee beans.

Instead of going to the landfill, they are combined with a biodegradable polymer and turned into pellets.

Those pellets are then turned into eco-friendly products.

“In this specific project, we wanted to make some cutlery,” said Amar Mohanty, a professor at the University of Guelph.

The federal government announced late last year a ban on manufacturing, importing and sale of plastic items.

The team at the University of Guelph said their product, called Ecosys Cutlery, will reduce plastic waste and pollution.

They also hope to reduce greenhouse gas emissions through the use of coffee skins that would normally be discarded.

“Waste from one industry can be used as the raw material for another industry,” added Mohanty.

Competitive Green Technologies, based in Leamington, Ont., is working with the University of Guelph team to produce the products on a commercial scale.

The cutlery could pop up in several fast food locations as soon as this month.

“If we had used this kind of cutlery in the past, we could have saved over 180,000 tonnes of CO2, which is actually all greenhouse gas emissions in the atmosphere,” explained Atul Bali, the CEO of Competitive Green Technologies. “Thank God we started now, it’s a good beginning.”

What also makes this cutlery stand out is its durability.

“Regulatory framework insists on 100 dishwater cycle reusable cutlery,” Bali said.

The team at the University of Guelph sees this as a great first step, but needs more to be done.

“We have to create the next generation of leaders for sustainable materials,” said Manjusri Misra, a professor at the school.