Recycling Nespresso Pods

As you know, Kelly and I are quite partial to a coffee or three to help us augment our reality during the day.

I have this big old silver Italian espresso machine that Kelly gave me for my 50th Birthday that used to be my pride and joy. That was until I was introduced to the simplicity and on-demand convenience of a Nespresso machine.
It was given to me as a Christmas present, and although sceptical to the whole coffee pod thing at first, Old Silver now sits in a forlorn cold silence on the corner of the bench.

I also have a portable ‘Nanopresso’ (here is my review) for using when on the road.

Yup. The undeniable consistency and quality of the Nespresso brew have combined with my inherent laziness to change the way I drink coffee. It has given me good coffee on demand at the price of stealing away the slow art of making it.

OK, so that’s the back story. This is not intended as a sneaky product placement for Nespresso. No, I want to talk about recycling their coffee pods.

Don’t throw your pods in the bin.

I have only very recently begun recycling my coffee pods. Just like most of us I would simply throw them in the bin. It would drive my friend Deb (another Nespresso fan & recycling mistress) totally mad.

Although these things are made of aluminium (and according to the Nespresso site are “infinitely recyclable”), they simply cannot be recycled in the usual waste management system.

Nespresso now provides a recycling service that will turn the coffee grounds into compost and the aluminium pods into other products. For most of us, this service is not all that hard to use. Once we stop being lazy.

How do I recycle MY pods?

The Nespresso coffee capsule recycling program claims to have more than 22,000 collection points throughout Australia. Options to recycle your pods include:

  • Returning your used capsules to your nearest Nespresso store or participating florists/garden centres. You can search for them here.
  • Set up a bulk recycling box to collect pods at your workplace.
  • Use a Nespresso Australia Post satchel to return used pods for free. You can get these satchels at Nespresso stores and supposedly online via their website (although this was a dead link when I tried it).
My Nespresso satchel.

But wait a second….

I do feel better now I am recycling these pods.
Even so, there is still a nagging feeling that I probably could do more for our environment by not using them in the first place.

Production and recycling of the pods all require energy (and Australians go through millions of the things every day) and contribute to my carbon footprint. The truth is that most of these pods (and there are plenty of plastic ones too) will end up in landfill.

Its true I am totally addicted to my Nespresso. Yet as I write this I can look over right now and see Old Silver waiting patiently on the kitchen bench.

4 responses to “Recycling Nespresso Pods”

    This may be an option? And in the interest of self disclosure, I receive absolutely no kickback from this. It just came across my feed ….


  2. Hi Ian,
    If you’re keen you can actually buy metal reusable coffee pods. They are a little bit of an investment (about $30 a capsule) but are a great way to cut down on waste 🙂


  3. Deirdre Russack Avatar
    Deirdre Russack

    I enjoy the daily ceremony of making morning coffee too much to move to coffee pods.


  4. Hello Ian
    You may have converted me to Nespresso, I wasn’t aware of the recycling option for the pods! I too have a large coffee machine on my bench !
    Really enjoying reading your blog , far more enjoyable than the ABC news etc!!!


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