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3D Printing with Coffee Grounds

Oct 25, 2023 | Food
A 3D printed structure being made using coffee-based filament

Source Summary

An assistant professor at the University of Colorado Boulder is making use of old coffee grounds to create 3D printed objects. Professor Rivera and his colleagues have found that coffee grounds, water and a few other easily accessible materials can create a paste compatible with consumer-grade 3D printers. It is a sustainable substitute to more commonly used materials like thermoplastics, which can take up to 1,000 years to decompose. Although this may not be the future of 3D printing, Rivera hopes that his innovation will inspire others to continue to develop materials that can replace plastics.


Sustainability and innovation go hand and hand. Whether product or service, the key is whether these sustainable and upcycled solutions can be produced economically, at scale. While it’s a novel idea, coffee grounds aren’t likely the holy grail of 3D printing materials—but it inspires us to continue innovating and finding sustainable solutions that benefit both consumers and the environment.