coffee beans

Morrisons stores are giving away used coffee grounds to local gardeners to help fertilise their plants from today (26 April).

The coffee recycling scheme is available at all 390 Morrisons cafés across England, Scotland and Wales. Nationwide, Morrisons serves more than 18 million cups of coffee and grinds nearly 316 tonnes of coffee beans in a year.

Morrisons will be placing the bags on a dedicated stand within store cafés. There is no limit to the number of bags each gardener can take away.

Used coffee grounds are a source of nitrogen, which is needed by plants in order to grow. They also encourage the growth of micro-organisms and are thought to attract earthworms.

Gardeners can either compost their used coffee grounds or put them directly into the soil around their plants. Putting it directly into the soil also adds organic matter, which improves soil’s water retention, drainage and structure.

“Used coffee grounds are a great organic resource which gardeners can use in their composter or soil,” said Simon Bowden, store manager at Morrisons Gloucester. “We sell a lot of cups of coffee in our stores and don’t like to see anything going to waste - so it’s great to see this natural fertiliser going to a good home. We hope that when spring comes Gloucester’s plants will be in full bloom as a result!”

Dr David Moon, head of sustainable food at Wrap, said: “It’s great to see a ‘waste material’ being used in a beneficial way like this and we welcome Morrisons’ decision. This highlights one aspect of our voluntary agreement to make food and drink more efficiently - Courtauld Commitment 2025, that often ‘waste’ which cannot be avoided can still have unexpected secondary benefits.”