The farm, part of a new sustainable area in Skanderbord, is only the second coffee farm located in Europe.
‘We must look at the raw material with new eyes’
The purpose of the farm is to experiment with new ways of producing and processing the coffee crop in order to utilise the plant’s full nutritional value, explained Lars Aaen Thøgersen, development and communications manager at Peter Larsen Kaffe.
Peter Larsen Kaffe specialises in fair trade and ecological coffee products and the group's innovation drive to increase the efficiency of coffee production and expand the applications it is used for can be viewed as an extension of this focus.
Aaen Thøgersen suggested that currently only 3-5% of the nutritional value of coffee is used and the company wants to cut this by reducing food waste and side streams. A more efficient use of the coffee plant would have positive consequences for the environment and could also help boost farmer incomes, the development executive continued.
"Coffee contains a high nutritional value in terms of both proteins, antioxidants, vitamins, etcetera, which are not being used today,” Aaen Thøgersen said.
"We must look at the raw material with new eyes. [For example] by a fermentation process where the bean is fermented, we can produce new types of products... We want to experiment with this and we expect to create a new application of a well-known plant and optimise the utilisation of the large resources that the biomass contains.”
Experiments will also look at how to make coffee more resilient to climate change, which is already having significant negative consequences in major coffee producing regions.
Sustainable methods in focus
The development of the coffee farm is being carried out in collaboration with the Knowledge Centre for Food Development (VIFU) as well as urban farming consultancy TagTomat.
According to architect and founder of TagTomat, Mads Boserup, the unique project represents a new way of thinking sustainably and includes the use of recycled materials.
"In developing the physical framework for the coffee industry, we have focused on creating a place that serves as a residence and inspiration zone all year long. [For example] the plant baskets are based on our self-irrigation technology, where recycled plastic containers from the food industry are converted into containers with both soil and water reservoirs.
“I look forward to continuing the cooperation ahead and seeing the development of the interaction between recycling, our solid plantation and coffee plants in the coming years."