Melitta Group

Enhance Plant Resilience with Homemade Biofertilizer




Coffee growers are participating in the "Back to the Roots" initiative by the Melitta Group and the Hanns R. Neumann Foundation, observing initial enhancements in their crops.


The "Back to the Roots" initiative by the Melitta Group, in collaboration with the Hanns R. Neumann Foundation (HRNS), seeks methods to recycle organic waste across the coffee supply chain. Coffee cultivation, processing, and preparation generate significant amounts of organic waste, such as coffee cherry pulp, which is typically discarded rather than recycled into compost. The project's goal is to eliminate the need for chemical fertilizers, thereby enhancing the profitability of coffee farming, as well as improving soil quality and bolstering plant resilience against climate variability.


In partnership with Brazilian waste management experts and scientists, including those from the esteemed Universidade Federal de Lavras (UFLA), three fertilizer alternatives have been pinpointed for better waste management: compost, bokashi, and biochar.


These alternatives are being trialed on coffee farms in Minas Gerais, Brazil. Coffee grower Arlindo Camilo de Lelis, who cultivates 4.5 hectares with his son, is a participant. "We face significant challenges due to climate change. If recycling our biological waste into compost can strengthen our plants against climate variations and reduce our reliance on costly chemical fertilizers, it would be a substantial benefit," remarks de Lelis, a coffee farmer for over two decades.


The Peixoto family, operators of an 18-hectare coffee farm in Minas Gerais, convert the wood from their old, unusable coffee plants into biochar, which is then incorporated into the soil. The family has observed initial enhancements in their plants. Roberto Peixoto notes, "Despite extended droughts, our plants appear very healthy." Soil tests have validated the seasoned coffee farmer's observations: a high level of organic material in the soil indicates


For more information, please visit: Back to the Roots


The Melitta Group


Melitta is an internationally active group of companies and is one of the well-known independent family businesses not only in Germany. The main tasks are the development, manufacture and distribution of branded products for coffee enjoyment, for the storage and preparation of food as well as for cleanliness in the household. More information at


Hanns R. Neumann Foundation (HRNS)


The Hanns R. Neumann Foundation (HRNS) is an independent foundation that works with smallholder families in coffee regions. HRNS implements projects in seven countries around the world that focus on the livelihood of smallholder families with a holistic approach to youth, climate change, family businesses, organizational development and equality. This strengthens the economic development of smallholder families and contributes to strong future generations, employment and employability, attractive rural communities and livable landscapes.



Melitta Group Management GmbH & Co. KG
Corporate Communications and Sustainability


Tanja Wucherpfennig
Director Internal and External Communications

Porträt Tanja Wucherpfennig

Kaffeefarmer schwingt Kaffeebohnen in Brasilien

Kaffeefarmerfamilie in Brasilien