Ford will be taking food waste from McDonald’s, diverting it from a landfill to its laboratory, where it will be engineered into bioplastics. In addition to reducing food waste, the effort will make car parts lighter, use less petroleum, and lower CO2 emissions.
The auto industry is under enormous pressure to reduce tailpipe emissions and increase production of electric vehicles. Over a quarter of all carbon emissions are from the transportation sector. Ford has reached a deal with California to increase the fuel economy of — and reduce emissions from — their new vehicle fleets through 2026. Turning the dried skin of the coffee bean, that falls of during roasting, into auto parts is a relatively minor effort compared to that, but Ford hopes that it will bolster its environmental bona fides all the same.
Ford has set a goal for itself to only use recycled and renewable plastics in its global vehicle fleet.