Ground to Ground

Ground to Ground in the Office

Recycling Coffee Grounds

It took me a little while to figure out that all those office coffee machines were spitting out a healthy quantity of grounds. And it was in one of those moments that I had flashbacks of my decade in corporate life (as in office life), and how many tray loads of used coffee grounds I myself had tipped into the rubbish.

It must have been the guilt of it all, or a bad memory. I’ll go for the bad memory. I just didn’t know what else to do with it back then.

I work in a large office building in the Melbourne CBD, and there are several of our hard working coffee machines, delivering to the caffeine requirements of our equally hard working people.

At first I would raid the bins for the grounds. And how lucky that they had separate bags for organic, recyclable, and hard waste. So I would take the grounds and a variety of banana and orange peels, tea bags, and those little icy pole sticks that they use to stir sugar into the coffees.

That was fine for getting a small amount from one machine, but there were several on just levels 1 and 2 of the building and it was not practical to go to each one. It was then I approached our facilities people, and they were very willing to assist. It seems to be the same almost everywhere that once people understand how good this stuff is, they don’t want to throw it away any more either.

So now I get about 100 kilos a week of coffee grounds (and the other goodies as mentioned above), put into a bin in the basement. I go down there several times a week and fill up my backpack, and some hand held bags, and pretend I’m back in scouts on a hiking trip.

And as you can see below, we got the Ground to Ground logo put near the machine also!

Initiative for used coffee ground collection in the office

Initiative for used coffee ground collection in the office

So what does all this mean? If I can get this much from one of many office buildings in Melbourne alone, how much could you get for yourself? Go ask, but only if you want to hear them say yes 🙂

And as always, use the logo if it helps promote what you are doing, or email me if you want some stickers.

9 thoughts on “Ground to Ground in the Office

  1. Pingback: The 5 easiest ways to start using coffee grounds | Coffee Grounds to Ground

  2. Pingback: The 5 easiest ways to start getting coffee grounds | Sane but different

  3. Great idea Shane! My husband and I did our first garden this year. Occasionally we collected our coffee grinds for the garden and house plants. It did not occur to me to ask others, including coffee vendors for their grinds. Creative idea that produces a winning situation for all, especially those that get to enjoy the harvest.


  4. Wow!

    Very exciting stuff!

    About two years ago I bought a big bucket for a local café to keep in their kitchen for their scraps, and a bigger bin for them to empty the bucket into, which they keep outside. Every week I collect the bin and in return bring them vegies. I call it a Compost Co-op.

    I inherited very poor soil, where I live, and like you, needed the help for my soil, and I just couldn’t stand all those scraps going to waste.

    These days though, it’s rare the worms get the scraps as my chickens beat them to it.

    I look fwd to following your project’s progress.

    Mazel tov!


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