New York (CNN Business) Ford has tapped McDonald’s to help it turn coffee parts into car parts. Starting this year, Ford is incorporating coffee chaff — coffee bean skin that comes off during the roasting process — into the plastic headlamp housing used in some cars. It’s asked McDonald’s, which doesn’t roast its own coffee, to connect it with suppliers. In recent years, as consumers become more concerned about plastic pollution and carbon emissions, companies have made sweeping commitments to reduce their impacts on the environment. They’ve also been developing innovative, sustainable materials to build consumer products. Ford is using coffee chaff to help reduce its environmental impact. Traditionally, Ford uses plastic and talc to make its headlamp housing, explained Debbie Miewelski, senior technical leader of materials sustainability for Ford. The coffee version is more sustainable because it’s lighter and doesn’t use the talc which, as a mineral, isn’t renewable. Coffee chaff, on the other hand, is widely available, Miewelski said, and much of it goes to waste. Eventually, Ford hopes to incorporate the material into more cars and use it for more parts. Ford decided to work with coffee chaff a few years ago. But it’s been experimenting […]

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