Saving the planet: with one cup of coffee at a time

PLANTING trees, cleaning invasive species and making organic fertilizers out of wastes, Starbucks has celebrated World Earth Day 2017 on April 22 in Cenbo village, Qingpu district with the goal of serving the local communities and making a greener future.

The ecologic village is sits by Dianshan Lake, Shanghai’s largest nature lake. The vast greenery and criss-crossing riverways not only protect the environment, but are also Shanghai’s backup water source.

About 300 volunteers from Starbucks, the Qinghuan Volunteer Service Center and Shanghai Vocational College of Science and Technology arrived at Cengu Farm in Cenbo village and worked in groups to plant trees, remove Canadian goldenrod (Solidago Canadensis), a fast-growing invasive weed harmful to the soil and to experiment with making fertilizer from coffee grounds and weeds.

Since 2011, Starbucks has designated every April as the Starbucks Global Community Service Month. This year, the Starbucks stores in Eastern China have contributed more than 10,000 hours of community service together with customers, suppliers and volunteers.

Eco-themed community service events have been organized in Shanghai for the past six years with the goal of improving the living environment and promoting a green, low-carbon lifestyle through green marathon and tree planting.

“Starbucks shares the same passion of caring for the earth just like our customers,” says Xie Guanhong, General Manager of President Starbucks.

“We have long-term commitment to preserving the nature and environment, and through this field trip to Cengu Farm, we also hope to introduce the concept of a low-carbon environment to our partners and the public, making it a lifestyle and contributing to bringing a bluer sky to Shanghai.”

Starbucks has also launched the one-month in store campaign “Love the Earth, Make One Cup Matter.” For the fourth consecutive year, Starbucks offered free coffee to customers who turn up with their own mugs and tumblers in the morning of World Earth Day.

The first 20 customers of each store also received a cup of Starbucks’ signature cold brew.

Since 1985, Starbucks has been offering discounts to customers who bring their own cups, which has saved millions of paper cups globally every year. In China, customers who bring their own cups can receive a 3-yuan discount.

Tips for recycling coffee grounds:

Every Starbucks store produces about 10 kilos of coffee grounds every day, the wastes is free for your use.

Remove odor: fill some dried coffee grounds in a container or a breathable bag and put in the fridge, shoe cabinet and bathroom. The coffee aroma can also be layered in an ashtray.

As fertilizers: grounds contain nitrogen which makes it an ideal fertilizer for plants that favor acidic soil, such as mint, aloe and azalea.

As hand scrub: wash and massage hands with grounds can smooth the skin and adsorb dirt.

Clean oil and grease: scrub some grounds onto greasy plates and clean with just water.