New Cafe Features 3D Printed Furniture from Coffee Grounds

Published on June 14, 2024 by Isaac B.

In recent years, global efforts to implement the circular economy have significantly increased. A key component of this model is circular design, which focuses on developing products that are environmentally friendly and have a sustainable life cycle. A notable example of this approach is a project aimed at promoting sustainability by redefining interior design. Spanish company Lowpoly has partnered with coffee roaster D-Origen to create 3D printed furniture for a new cafe in Barcelona. This innovative furniture, made from coffee waste, showcases the potential of 3D printing in sustainable design.

Coffee grounds are commonly used as plant fertilizer, for odor control, and in industrial applications such as biomass production. Despite these uses, a significant amount of coffee waste still ends up in landfills—just consider the number of coffee shops in any city to grasp the scale of this waste. Addressing this issue, Lowpoly and D-Origen have formed a remarkable collaboration that utilizes coffee grounds from the same coffee shop to produce furniture. Lowpoly developed an innovative material combining coffee grounds with recycled PLA, which they used to 3D print bars, counters, stools, and lights. These unique pieces are now featured in D-Origen’s Casa Calvet café, a modernist building designed by Antoni Gaudí.

muebles impresos en 3d

Behind the design of the furniture are Gianluca Pugliese (founder of Lowpoly), Ilaria Marzano and Arturo Tedeschi, who used artificial intelligence and advanced digital design techniques to develop their idea. The furniture is made to measure and the unique shades are the result of using coffee as the main material. In fact, the material used is 98% organic, with the rest being recycled PLA. By using this type of material, the 3D-printed furniture is petroleum-free and therefore also biodegradable.

On the technical side of furniture production, Lowpoly’s large-scale 3D printing technology was used. The 3D printers are industrial robotic arms with a REV3RD extruder that can process large volumes of material and print parts up to 3.50 meters high. In addition to this technical efficiency, 3D printing made it possible to realize the team’s design ideas. The resulting parts have a very natural finish and are in keeping with the design of the café.

Lowpoly is renowned for developing materials derived from organic waste combined with recycled plastics. Their creation of a coffee house featuring furniture made from coffee grounds exemplifies their innovative approach. In a recent interview for the Venus Founders Podcast, Gianluca Pugliese shared that the team also utilizes waste from oranges, grapes, bananas, and olives, mixing these with self-collected plastics to produce their unique materials.

What do you think of this example of a sensible circular economy? Let us know in a comment below or on our LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter pages! Don’t forget to sign up for our free weekly newsletter here for the latest 3D printing news straight to your inbox! You can also find all our videos on our YouTube channel.

*All Photo Credits: Lowpoly

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