An e-zine for happenings of local culture in Milwaukee and elsewhere

Obnoxiously Responsible, Organic Coffee Filter

Over the past 10 years, many ways surfaced to express concern for your body and your environment. None have arrived quite like the Organic Coffee Filter. A simple idea, kind of obnoxious, but oh so practical, yet so heavily packaged; a bundle of savings and contradictions all in one humble product.

If you’ve been to Outpost to dine on a nice lunch they remind you to take the “1 napkin challenge”. According to a gentle sign by the garbage can, 80% of landfill waste is paper products (or something like that). Anyway, I have some repenting to do. I was the nap-king (well that too)… the napkin-king in high school. I’d ball up at least 20 napkins in one sitting.

Now I can make amends with this thoughtful product. Basically, someone invested a few pieces of thread, some light hempen like fabric, and sacrificed their ethical code on some combo plastic-paper packaging and brought us the organic coffee filter. These days, I can go through a package of 200 bleached paper filters in a month.

Now I don’t have to feel guilty for wasting paper if I make that ritual pot of coffee that I don’t even drink. Although I’m not sure how “Organic” it is, (poor organic you used to have meaning, now you’re just another abused word) I bought one and it’s certainly reusable.

How to use an Organic Coffee Filter:

The instructions say run a pot through it to “condition” the filter, then use it like a regular coffee filter. I did that and as expected the filter turned brown. Great, now I’ll always have linen fiber aged coffee, sort like a wine barrel for coffee. Before disposing of the spent grounds, wait for the grounds to dry and empty the decomposable coffee grounds into your garbage, or compost “for the truly hardcore”.

To care for the Organic Coffee Filter, the owner can boil the filter with a solution of water and baking soda periodically, which is basically never for me because I figure my coffee brew is hot enough and strong enough to kill any microbe. What did our ancestors ever do without hand sanitizer!?

Tip: You have to find the sweet spot to wedge the filter between the cone filter holder and the top of the coffee maker. One thing the organic coffee filter doesn’t do is hold its shape. Until you get the hang of it you may have to deal with a few coffee grounds in your cup.

Overall, this is a great purchase that will save me at least $20 bucks a year. I found mine at Whole Foods. Do yourself, or an overly socially concerned and conscious friend a favor and get these, you will sleep much easier whenever you chose to sleep, which is probably never because you drink coffee at 9 o’clock at night.

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