Kartell and illycaffè design a seat made from recycled coffee capsules

Kartell has signed a new partnership with illycaffè  to contribute to the sustainability of the planet by promoting a production model based on the circular economy.

The two Italian brands have come together to design Re-Chair, a seat made from recycled Illy Iperespresso coffee capsules. The chair is the  latest creation of Antonio Citterio for Kartell, and  the first in a series of products that will eventually form a collection.

When the plastic components for making Iperespresso capsules arrive at the illycaffè production line, they undergo a special industrial process before being filled with coffee. This forms the tiny perforations needed for the coffee to come out before assembling the individual parts into complete capsules.

During the course of this process, automated quality controls reject any capsules that have been incorrectly perforated or assembled. These capsules, however, are made from top-quality plastic and can therefore be transformed into the secondary raw material needed for this project.

Kartell regenerates the recycled material by grinding it and transforming it into granules suitable for injection moulding.

“I am delighted with this new partnership. illy and Kartell share the same values of quality and sustainability,” says Andrea Illy, chairman of illycaffè. As a B Corp certified company, we have adopted a regenerative business model that pursues wellbeing through circularity. Our company activities therefore help regenerate the biosphere. Re-Chair is a perfect example of how this model works.”

It took nearly two years to achieve the necessary quality standards and to perfect the production process for turning waste coffee capsules into chairs.

“Our collaboration with illycaffè is far more than a simple supply of recycled material. It embodies a whole new way of managing circular economy processes between two leading brands. A top-quality, fast moving consumer product has given rise to an object of excellent quality and beauty too,” says Kartell’s president, Claudio Luti.