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AIDA Cruises Partners With Coffeecycle to Turn Coffee Grounds Into Soap

AIDA Cruises Partners With Coffeecycle to Turn Coffee Grounds Into Soap

German cruise line AIDA has begun recycling used coffee grounds from one of its ships to create vegan soap with the help of a Hamburg-based startup.

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AIDA Cruises, Germany’s top cruise line, is partnering with Coffeecycle, a young Hamburg-based start-up. Coffee grounds from AIDA ships will be recycled and turned into high-quality vegan natural soaps as part of the collaboration.

Coffee grounds from AIDA ships will now be recycled and turned into high-quality vegan natural soaps (image courtesy of AIDA Cruises)

The partnership between AIDA Cruises and Coffeecycle seeks to reduce food waste on AIDA ships while also supporting a circular economy. Coffee grounds, which were previously considered organic waste, will now be reused as a key ingredient in the soap’s production.

Coffeecycle founders Liam Metzen and Leonardt Mücke use the coffee grounds from the cruise line’s ship AIDAprima to create a unique soap that is not only sustainable, but also skin-friendly and nourishing.

Liam Metzen and Leo Mücke, founders of Coffeecycle, started the company in 2021 as high school students while working as baristas in a Hamburg café (image courtesy of AIDA Cruises)

Only coffee grounds from certified Fair Trade coffee are used, and the soap also contains natural moisturizing ingredients such as coconut and olive oils. Like all cosmetics and most cleaning products on board the AIDA fleet, the new soap is free of microplastics.

In a press release, the company explained that in the future, coffee grounds from other AIDA ships calling at Hamburg will also be used to make the soap.

“We were absolutely convinced by Coffeecycle’s idea,” said Johannes Nagel, Corporate Hotel Manager at AIDA Cruises. “This partnership underlines our commitment to sustainable practices and our ongoing efforts to reduce the environmental footprint of the cruise industry. Efficiently recycling coffee grounds is an important step in sustainably reducing food waste while developing innovative products.”

The coffee soap is available in three different scents: the classic AIDA Sea Scent, Peach, and Orange. They are available now on all AIDA ships (except AIDAaura) at a retail price of €9.90 (approximately $10.90 USD).

AIDA’s new recycled coffee soap is available in three different scents: the classic AIDA Sea Scent, Peach, and Orange (image courtesy of AIDA Cruises)

“We are very excited about this cooperation with AIDA. Since we founded Coffeecycle as baristas, our primary goal has been to recycle the maximum amount of coffee grounds. This collaboration with AIDA allows us to do just that and is perfectly aligned with our mission! We are curious to see what quantities of coffee grounds we can now reuse and thus save from disposal,” said Coffeecycle founders Metzen and Mücke.

According to the cruise line, recycling coffee grounds is a further step the company is taking towards more sustainability and environmental protection. The careful use of resources is a fundamental pillar of AIDA’s environmental management. Careful handling of raw materials, food, and water are part of the daily routine aboard AIDA ships. The company prides itself on continuously optimizing its circular economy model to use fewer resources, produce less waste, and maximize recycling.

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What do you think about AIDA’s new soap made from recycled coffee grounds? Would you buy some on your next AIDA cruise? Do you have any other ideas that cruise lines could use to repurpose waste aboard their ships?

Carrie Ann Karstunen