Cabeco (standing for “Cascading of Benefits of Coffee”) was born from the inquisitiveness of a coffee producer and a scientist and their concern about the “economic, ecological, and human waste” of coffee farming and its industrial processing. Thus, the company focused its researches on coffee grounds derived from the production of freeze-dried coffee. Alone, European producers of instant coffee alone 2 million tons of industrial coffee grounds, which are currently burnt or methanized.

Patented and sustainable extraction process

A characterization study of the components of coffee grounds recovered from the instant coffee production process unveiled a series of interesting molecules, from caffeine to less expected substances, such as a series of oligomer, oligoglucan and oligopeptide managers of skin health and the microbiome.

In order to create high value active ingredients from this resource, which used to be seen as waste, Cabeco has developed and patented a sustainable extraction process. “This green process uses no solvents, emits no CO2, and creates no waste,” highlights the company.

This process allows for the upcycling of 100% of the coffee grounds that Cabeco transforms into two 100% natural cosmetic raw materials: Cofoil, a semi-liquid lipid, highly regenerative/reparative active ingredient with several benefits for cutaneous tissues; and Cofex, an ultra-soft exfoliant powder.

Cofoil, a new anti-ageing active ingredient

Cofoil is a new 100% upcycled lipid. This semi-liquid active ingredient, golden yellow to dark orange in colour, offers a slightly perceptible hint of coffee aroma that can be masked easily, if required.

Tested on distressed skin explants, Cofoil demonstrated its capacity to enhance the healing process and unveiled key cell behaviour during the restoration of youth.

According to Cabeco, Cofoil acts on the main factors of skin youth (support fibres, immune-protectors, defensins, aquaporins, oligomers and precursors) to boost skin regeneration and reparation. It increases layering of the stratum corneum and densifies the epidermal neocollagen.

When at ambient temperature, Cofoil does not become rancid over prolonged storage and no preservatives are needed. Antibacterial activity has been proven versus a wide range of germs including multi-resistant Staph.

Usage rate is typically 2 à 5%.

Cofex, a range of soft powders with active molecules

The Cofex range of exfoliants is produced simultaneously with Cofoil.

Cofex designates a natural insoluble coffee powder, that is soft and supple in feel and completely devoid of unpleasant abrasiveness. The structure is that of thin leaflets of supple woven fibres, which gently roll over the skin and are non-abrasive. Ice brown chocolate in colour, leaving no stain, it is virtually odourless, with a barely perceptible hint of coffee.

Several ranges are available:

 Cofex Extra offers particul sizes from150-300µm. It is a gentle, active and stimulating exfoliant;
 Cofex Ultra Active Powder is a refined version (less than 50 µm);
 Cofex, for all other fine grades available on request.

Cofex powders can be used in all formulae, water and oil based, emulsions and dry preparations. They are never ionized.

Cabeco recommends using Cofex Extra at a concentration of 5 to 15%, as an exfoliant, and 1 to 5% for soaps.

Towards a more sustainable supply chain

With these two new cosmetic actives, Cabeco aims to be part of a transformative process for the coffee sector.

Indeed, coffee is the most consumed beverage on earth after water. Two third of humanity drink coffee every day, a total of 2.5 billion cups a day! However, smallholder growers (100 million families- Brazil, Vietnam, Mexico, Ethiopia, Columbia…) are hardly benefiting from global coffee trade. Undergoing financial pressure, extreme weather and climate conditions, and reduced yields of a demanding crop, many growers have begun to uproot plants in favour of other cash crops. Actually, for many of them, coffee growing is no longer viable nor profitable.

This is why Cabeco has chosen to join a Regenerative Agriculture program and to create new revenue streams throughout the coffee sector by returning part of its profits where most needed, as part of an approach framed and validated by Gold Rainforest Alliance membership.