Keurig’s New Coffee Pods Are Completely Compostable—but You’ll Need a New Machine to Use Them

Coffee machine maker Keurig just unveiled a new plastic-free, metal-free compostable coffee pod called the K-Round. This new pod is a little puck of coffee compressed and sealed in a plant-based, food-grade shell of cellulose and starch.

There’s no little aluminum tab to pull off at the top, no plastic cup or internal filter to dispose of afterward. Just a puck of coffee held together by a food-safe coating of seaweed.

The K-Rounds are made from technically edible ingredients: cellulose, sorbitol, sodium chloride, and alginate harvested from (typically) seaweed or algae, and they’ll biodegrade just like coffee grounds in a landfill or a compost heap.

This new coffee maker is designed to make a variety of coffee drinks that Keurigs haven’t been able to do in the past due to the constraints of the original K-Cup.

That’s because the company claims it has been limited in how much coffee it could load in the grind profiles.

The underlying technology is proprietary, but the K-Round isn’t the first compostable coffee pod made out of compressed coffee coated in cellulose.

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