In response to the increasing urgency of the current climate crisis, Riff, a purpose-driven coffee company, announced today that their latest offering, Riff Energy+, has officially been certified carbon neutral by Carbonfund.org Foundation‘s Carbonfree® Product Certification Program. With this certification, Riff Energy+, a tasty plant-powered climate-friendly energy drink made from upcycled, nutrient-rich, cascara (coffee fruit) and other plant based ingredients, becomes the nation’s first energy drink and functional beverage to be certified carbon neutral. Riff is the first packaged beverage brand in the Carbonfree® Product Certification Program to hold this distinction. The first drink of its kind, Riff Energy+ is proving to be a groundbreaking good-for-you alternative in the energy drink category.
“We’re all super passionate coffee lovers at Riff, but as we learned more and more about coffee’s impact on the environment related to food waste, along with the challenging conditions coffee farmers face every day, there’s no way we could remain complacent,” said Paul Evers, Riff CEO and Co-Founder. “Our focus shifted quickly to developing a product that would generate a positive impact. Riff’s purpose became reducing greenhouse gas emissions, avoiding nutrient-rich food waste, and helping vulnerable coffee growing communities.”
Paving the way for others in the coffee industry to engage in environmentally friendly practices, Riff Energy+ was considered carbon neutral prior to this certification based on the cross-correlation of two Riff-sponsored studies conducted in 2020: a Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) conducted by University of Oregon and an Environmental Impact Study conducted by Oregon State University. Dr. Christina Schlachter conducted the Environmental Impact Study which was supervised by Dr. Dominique Bachelet, a Senior Climate Change Scientist. Dr. Schlachter has also continued to update the LCA in response to incremental product formulation improvements. One key finding of the Environmental Impact Study revealed that an estimated 70 billion pounds of cascara is thrown to waste each year around the world. Food waste represents approximately 10% of food-related global emissions which accounts for 20-40% of total global greenhouse gas emissions.
After learning about the massive negative impact decomposing wasted cascara has had on the environment over the 400+ year life of the coffee industry, Riff was moved to adopt a mission to utilize 100% of the coffee plant’s agricultural value. To complement its award-winning cold brew coffee brand, Riff launched its upcycled cascara-based Energy+ beverage line in late spring of 2021. Riff’s excitement for cascara was cemented after learning about its exotic fruit flavor profiles, naturally occurring caffeine, and rich nutrient content including high levels of antioxidants, potassium, iron, and magnesium. Riff argues that cascara is likely the better half of what the coffee plant has to offer, but due to lack of awareness and demand it’s been historically thrown to waste, ironically contributing to the coffee industry’s greatest threat– rising temperatures resulting from climate change. Energy+ is also a part of 1% For The Planet—donating 1% of revenue to forest preservation and reforestation projects in coffee growing regions. The addition of the certified carbon neutral seal further supports Riff’s mission to bring more visibility to cascara and reduce the carbon impact of food and beverage production.
Eric M. Carlson, President of Carbonfund.org Foundation, said: “We are thrilled to be working with Riff on this partnership to go carbon neutral. Forward thinking companies are continuing to prove that new products, such as energy drinks, can be part of the fight against climate change. Riff is taking their environmental responsibility seriously which is an important step toward a more sustainable future for all of us.”
Based in Bend, Oregon, Riff was founded in 2017 by coffee enthusiasts with the goal of creating a unique yet sustainable packaged beverage. Since its founding, the company has grown to support a circular economy by converting waste streams into revenue streams for struggling coffee farmers, becoming carbon neutral, and practicing sustainability. Sourced through a Portland-based importer, the company began experimenting with cascara in late 2019. Containing a daily dose of vitamin C and powerful antioxidants, Riff’s Energy+ contains clean-label, good-for-you ingredients.
To learn more about Riff or to shop their products, please visit letsriff.com.
Riff is a purpose-driven coffee company committed to exploring and celebrating 100% of the coffee plant’s agricultural value. In 2018, Riff launched a line of cold brewed coffees, and in late 2019 began experimenting with cascara—the nutritionally rich yet historically wasted byproduct of the coffee harvest—to launch their complimentary clean-label energy drink brewed from upcycled cascara: Energy+ Immunity. Riff loves coffee and the planet, which is why they’re continually seeking ways to translate all that the amazing coffee plant has to offer into food and beverage products that are beneficial to people. With Energy+, Riff creates a win-win-win-win scenario: it provides an economic boost for coffee farmers, adds sustainability to the coffee industry, reduces coffee’s wasted byproduct’s negative environmental impact, and delivers a refreshing clean-label, functional drink to consumers. To purchase products or for more information, please visit LetsRiff.com, Amazon, or connect with us @drinkriff on Instagram/Facebook/Twitter.
About Carbonfund.org Foundation
Carbonfund.org is leading the fight against climate change, making it easy and affordable for any individual, business or organization to reduce & offset their climate impact. Carbonfund.org has America’s first carbon neutral product label, Carbonfree® Certified. The Carbonfree® Certified Products Program is proud to be part of Amazon’s Climate Pledge Friendly Program.