A limited-edition bicycle made from 300 recycled Nespresso coffee pods
As cities and consumers alike grapple with what to do with their used coffee pods, Nestlé has partnered with Swedish bike brand Vélosophy to produce a stylish bicycle made from Nespresso coffee pods. Giving new meaning to recycling, these limited-edition bicycles use the aluminum garnered from the used coffee pods to create the elegant RE:CYCLE.
According to recent statistics, one in three Americans owns a single-use coffee maker — not even taking into account the machines used in businesses or offices. While the by-products of these machines haven’t been good for our environment, if you’ve been following Nestlé’s eco-friendly approaches closely, you’ll know how they’ve been trying to be more eco-friendly. In fact, Nespresso had even introduced a program to allow Canadian customers to recycle their coffee pods for free by mail.
Aluminum is one of the world’s most valuable resources because it can be re-melted and reused infinitely. And since Nespresso’s pods have aluminum in their makeup, they were perfect to create these bicycles. With 1,000 limited edition bicycles produced, it took over 300,000 recycled Nespresso Arpeggio capsules; about 300 coffee pods to create one bicycle. The greatest technical challenge was finding a way to convert the lightweight aluminum into a material rigid enough to meet bicycle manufacturing safety standards.
Justin DeGeorge, vice president of marketing at Nespresso stated, “RE:CYCLE has an iconic design, grounded in sustainability, that brings to life the potential of recycling our aluminum coffee capsules. Our unique collaboration pays tribute to the beauty of aluminum, which can be recycled again and again, and demonstrates the potential of the circular economy.”
RE:CYCLE is the brainchild of Vélosophy founder Jimmy Östholm, a former IKEA communications manager turned bike entrepreneur who was intrigued by Nespresso’s recycling campaigns. He hopes other product designers might be inspired to work with recycled aluminum to offset the steady demand for single-use capsules.
The newly minted aluminum bicycle initiative, however, is proof that Nestlé is open to aligning with start-up companies for innovative ways of reusing the metal from single-use capsules. The final design of the bicycles come in a royal purple colourway, with an Aalto-esque bentwood front basket. It has two cup holders to stash your Nespresso coffees in while you’re on the go. It even has a Nespresso pod-like bell to attribute its muse.
Priced at US$1,450, it includes shipping costs within the US. In addition, Vélosophy says that for every bike sold, a bicycle will be given to a young girl in Ghana to make her journeys to school more convenient.