Coffee pods like those offered by Nespresso have a huge environmental footprint, with billions ending up in landfills each year where they can take anywhere from 150 to 500 years to break down. The company has taken steps to avoid some of the waste, however, including fashioning some of the recovered metals into a fully functional Swiss Army Knife.
Among the other steps Nespresso has taken to try and address the waste created by single-use coffee capsules is a partnership with recycling company TerraCycle, through which it actually covers the cost of shipping for users to send the pods into a recycling center, where the plastics and metals are melted into new products. A new recycling scheme also kicked off in the UK last month.
It was actually last year that Nespresso first teamed up with Victorinox, maker of the Swiss Army Knife, to use some of the recovered metals in one of its famed multi-tools. Apparently the first run was a success, so the duo have returned with a limited-edition knife for 2017 that uses melted down and recast aluminum capsules as the scales on its handle; 24 of them for each knife, to be precise.
It must be said, that won't even register a blip on the radar compared to the billions of capsules that end up in landfills each year, so it does seem a bit of a stretch to laud the company for its sustainability efforts here. But hey, it's better than nothing, right? The knife's tools include a blade, can opener, two screwdrivers, bottle opener, wine stripper and a punch. It is available for US$48 through Victorinox's website.