The Optimized Production of 5-(Hydroxymethyl)furfural and Related Products from Spent Coffee Grounds

Andre Prates Pereira, Timothy Woodman, Paraj Brahmbhatt, Christopher Chuck

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The increasing consumption of coffee worldwide has led to higher amounts of spent coffee grounds (SCG) being produced which are generally disposed of in landfill or used as compost. However, the wide range of molecules present in SCG such as saccharides, lignin, lipids and proteins give this biomass source a large chemical functionality. In this work, SCG were fractionated to separate the components into three separate portions for further valorization; these were hemicellulose-enriched fractions (HEF), lignin-enriched fraction (LEF) and cellulose-enriched fraction (CEF). HEF was effectively used in the growth of the oleaginous yeast Metschnikowia pulcherrima, additionally, the C6 sugars present in this fraction suggests that it can be used in the production of 5-hydroxymethylfurfural (HMF). The LEF had a considerable high heating value (HHV) and would be suitable as a biofuel component for combustion. CEF was efficiently used in the production of HMF as 0.35 g of this product were obtained from 10 g of SCG. Such results demonstrate that SCG can be effectively used in the production of HMF within a biorefinery concept.
Original languageEnglish
Article number3369
Number of pages22
JournalApplied Sciences
Issue number16
Publication statusPublished - 15 Aug 2019


  • 5-hydroxymethylfurfural
  • Biomass
  • Cellulose
  • Fractionation
  • Hemicellulose
  • Lignin
  • Spent coffee grounds

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Materials Science
  • Instrumentation
  • General Engineering
  • Process Chemistry and Technology
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Fluid Flow and Transfer Processes


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