Nantou industry turns agricultural waste into green gold by developing coffee grounds and rice husk straws

Sugarcane straws that have been certified by German biodegradable certification and Taiwan’s Green Mark. (Photo by reporter Feng-Li Chen) 

Last year with sugarcane straws and this year with coffee grounds straw and lid, awarded a gold medal in Concours Lépine International Paris, Chien-Chung Huang and his team reused the fibers from agricultural waste to attract domestic rice and tea farmers to make rice husk straws and green tea straws from rice husk and tea residue, and mass-production.

Certified by Germany and EPA last month

JuTian Cleantech Co., Ltd., located at Central Taiwan Innovation Campus, MOEA in Zhongxing New Village, several young people led by Chien-Chung Huang made straws from bagasse last year. Attracting attention both domestic and foregin, the straw was awarded a gold medal in Concours Lépine Méditerranéen Montpellier and tested for biodegradability by international testing institutes before participating in the exhibition, and then applied for a mark and certification from Taiwan and Germany. At the end of June, finally received Taiwan’s Green Mark and Germany’s DIN CERTCO certification.

France invites to set up a company in Lyon

The team’s technology of reusing agricultural waste fibers has awarded the gold medal in the Concours Lépine Méditerranéen Montpellier for two years, and has been invited to Lyon to set up a company, which is also a member of Polymeris and will receive official funding or development assistance. Farmers and manufacturers in Taiwan who produce agricultural waste have also asked for assistance in reusing these wastes, such as rice husks, tea residues, grape pomace, residue of citronella after the production of essential oil, Hinoki wood chips, etc. France also requested that grape pomace be reused.

Chien-Chung Huang said that the team has developed and started producing rice husk straws and green tea straws, both of which can emit the fragrance of plants. In addition to accepting the French wineries and farmers request, the development of grape pomace desk and chair products, in the use of Taiwan grape pomace as material R&D, is also about to complete the development.

He said, according to data, Taiwan can produce 3 million tons of rice husks every year, if reuse can reduce the amount of waste, the use of rice husks will keep increasing in the future if the order quantity increases.

The cost of agricultural waste straws is higher than plastic

As for the green tea straws, they are made from tea residues or selected tea sticks for material after the tea making process in Mingjian Township, both of which are biodegradable materials. The cost of each straw is calculated in angstroms, a little higher than plastic straws

Sugarcane straws have been sold to many countries, including: Japan, Korea, Hong Kong, Macau, Malaysia, USA, Australia, Netherlands, Franch, New Zealand, Singapore, Canada, Dubai, Mauritius, Myanmar, Vietnam, Philippines, etc. 

The rice husk straw (middle) and green tea straw (right) have been developed. (Photo by reporter Feng-Li Chen) 

The coffee grounds straw and lid developed by Chien-Chung Huang(left) and his team was awarded a gold medal in Concours Lépine International Paris again this year. (Photo by reporter Feng-Li Chen)