Back to the Roots is committed to transforming one of the largest waste streams in America – the tons of coffee ground waste generated daily- into a highly-demanded, nutritious, and valuable food product: gourmet mushrooms. The Grow-it-at-Home Mushroom kits make sustainability accessible to everyone by empowering them to rethink ‘waste’.
Not only has this initiative created a healthy food source, but it has also provided urban jobs, prevented thousands of tons of valuable substrate from being dumped into landfills, and donated a substantial amount of its mushrooms, soil amendment and kits back into the communities from which the coffee ground waste originated.
Each BTTR operation 1) makes daily collections of the coffee ground waste generated from local coffee shops, 2) transports the waste to an urban warehouse just miles away, and 3) transforms it into the substrate for gourmet pearl oyster mushrooms and grow-it-at-home mushroom kits. The mushroom kits are sold to consumers nationwide, allowing for the most fresh and high-quality produce possible. Our own waste resulting from the mushroom production process, the post-harvest grounds, becomes a premium soil amendment that is sold and donated back to the same local community.
In short, the BTTR model is recycling and reusing a large waste stream headed to the landfill, adding value to it multiple times, and then packaging and selling its own by-product.