Spanish startup Recycap has secured €400k to make recycling coffee capsules simple and like second nature. Based in Valencia, the team now plans to level up its commercial activities.
Brewing quality coffee at home has been made simpler by the growth of coffee pods and capsule machines. Now, to make a speciality cappuccino, flat white or macchiato (or whatever your coffee order of choice is), people simply pop a pod into a machine, press a button and voila.
However, these pods have environmental consequences and it’s reported that 4.9 billion used aluminium coffee capsules end up in landfills. Each capsule takes 500 years to degrade in nature. A new approach to sustainably using these and efficiently recycling the pods is urgently needed.
Based in Valencia, Recycap has come up with a solution, using tech to recycle capsules in a simple, automated way. The startup has just secured €400k from Veos Ventures to take its product to market and further develop its REACT technology.
The founders: “We are passionate about making a difference and take our environmental responsibility very seriously. We are constantly striving for new ways to reduce our impact on the planet by bringing new technologies and patented aluminium and coffee grounds recycling solutions to the market.”
The coffee pod market is growing rapidly – it went from a value of $9.92 billion in 2021 to $12.33 billion in 2022. Around 39k capsules are produced every minute worldwide and in Spain alone more than 5 million capsules are used every day. But, only 10% of these are recycled, which means that almost 100 tons of capsules with coffee inside are sent to landfill every day without being recycled.
Founded in 2022 by Eduardo Pérez, Vicente Oller and Constantino LLobell Durá, Recycap enables customers to recycle their aluminium and plastic coffee capsules at home or office and dispose of the empty capsules in regular recycling bins thanks to its Recycap Automated Coffee Technology (REACT™) system.
The platform enables the removal of coffee capsule grounds, which facilitates the recycling of aluminium capsules. It is based on a mechanical system that allows the coffee to be easily cleaned from the capsules, leaving the aluminium or plastic capsules empty and ready for recycling.
The founders of Recycap: “The REACT™ platform allows both businesses and consumers to recycle their coffee capsules in the comfort of their homes and offices and dispose of clean coffee capsules in regular recycling bins, reducing their environmental impact and allowing for the recycling and reuse of discarded aluminium.”
This new funding will be used to manufacture commercial-sized Recycap recycling devices, begin commercial operations and create other industry partnerships, as well as to develop the first home coffee machine with fully integrated REACT™ technology. Recycap® Technologies is also currently working with leading coffee retailers and brands to create point-of-sale aluminium coffee capsule recycling programs.
Bassam Damaj, Ph.D., co-founder and managing partner of Veos Ventures: “We believe REACT™ will bring revolutionary changes to the world of coffee capsule recycling and we are impressed with Recycap® Technologies’ approach to solving this important environmental issue. We are delighted to have the opportunity to partner with the fantastic team at Recycap®.”