Our packaging is home compostable, yet good enough to keep the coffee good for up to 12 months due to the high quality barriers in the bag. The biggest problem with keeping dry foods good is the ingress of moisture and coffee is pretty hydroscopic. Hence it is important the coffee is packed after preferably 1- 2 days after roasting.
There are 3 layers in the bag. The inner layer is a bioplastic that allows heat sealing. The middle barrier is a highly sophisticated bioplastic that gives the barrier to moisture, O2 and UV light. The outer layer is kraft paper that allows printing and gives structure to the bag. We selected the bioplastics since they are certified home compostable against the Aus/NZ standard and registered. Kraft paper is basic paper that is home compostable. We use the minimum of water-based and colour inks. The valves are also certified home compostable. For best results cut the bag up. We have lots of experience now with composting our bags.
The CO2 problem
When we roast coffee we create quite a bit of CO2, sorry! But we over-compensate with all our carbon credits. Most is from burning gas in the roaster. However components in the coffee itself also create CO2. Quite a bit disappears during the roasting but straight after roasting there is some 1.5 -2% of CO2 left in the bean. During the 4 weeks after roasting, the coffee releases this CO2. Freshly roasted coffee has a sharper taste due to carbonic acid formed during the extraction. Hence coffee that has rested at least a week tends to taste better. Some natural processed coffees actually taste best weeks or even months after roasting. The coffee is also hydroscopic and needs to be protected from moisture in the air. That is why the coffee needs to be packaged soon after roasting and why there is a little one-way valve in the packaging: to release the CO2 from the bag (it will blow up like a balloon otherwise), and for you to think we put it there to smell the coffee :). If a bag is inflated like a balloon then there is nothing wrong with the coffee, some valves just don't always open as they are supposed to.
We often add sealing sticks to orders or attach them to the bags. They are very useful and easy to use although on our relative thick paper film they don't always slide on easily the first time. Make sure the valve in the bag is not in the crease and not too close to where the stick will slide. Squeeze excess air out of the bag to improve freshness.
They are handy on any bag and reduce wastage compared to integral seals in bags.
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