Ford, McDonald’s partner to make car parts out of coffee

Ford and McDonald’s have formed an unlikely partnership based on coffee.

No, Ford isn’t making McDonald’s-branded cup holders. The two megacompanies are going to be making car parts out of coffee leftovers.

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Ford is going to use coffee chaff, or the skin that comes off the coffee bean when the beans are roasted, to help make plastic headlamp housings for some of the motor company's vehicles, CNN reported.

McDonald’s doesn’t roast its coffee but has suppliers do it for it, so Ford has asked the fast-food chain to connect them with coffee suppliers.

Ford normally uses plastic and talc to make headlamp housings, but talc is a mineral and not renewable. Coffee chaff is leftover and usually thrown away or turned into mulch or charcoal, CNBC reported.

The chaff will be heated and mixed with plastic and other chemicals and made into pellets before becoming the housings, CNBC reported.

Ford says the headlamp housings could be just the beginning. the company hopes to use it in more parts.

It's not the only organic material the company uses in car production. Soy-based foam fills the car cushions and has done so since 2011. It also uses wheat, coconut and tomato waste in cars, CNN reported.

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