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What comes into the mind when you see this 2 logos?



Nope, it is neither a JV nor acquisition [sweatdrop] (I hear some screaming heng ah), but for the development of sustainable material as part of the corporate initiative to go green. [thumbsup]



Ford is turning McDonald's coffee waste into headlights


New York (CNN Business)Ford has tapped McDonald's to help it turn coffee parts into car parts.

Starting this year, Ford is incorporating coffee chaff — coffee bean skin that comes off during the roasting process — into the plastic headlamp housing used in some cars. It's asked McDonald's, which doesn't roast its own coffee, to connect it with suppliers.

In recent years, as consumers become more concerned about plastic pollution and carbon emissions, companies have made sweeping commitments to reduce their impacts on the environment. They've also been developing innovative, sustainable materials to build consumer products.

Traditionally, Ford uses plastic and talc to make its headlamp housing, explained Debbie Miewelski, senior technical leader of materials sustainability for Ford. The coffee version is more sustainable because it's lighter and doesn't use the talc which, as a mineral, isn't renewable.

Coffee chaff, on the other hand, is widely available, Miewelski said, and much of it goes to waste. Eventually, Ford hopes to incorporate the material into more cars and use it for more parts.

Ford decided to work with coffee chaff a few years ago. But it's been experimenting with organic materials for over a decade.

The auto company has been using soy-based foam in its cushions since 2011. It also uses waste from wheat, coconut, tomato and other plants in its cars in order to help meet some of its sustainability goals, which include using more renewable materials.

"If you came to our lab, it looks somewhere between a landfill and a farm," Miewelski said. Her team decided to examine the potential of coffee because the beverage is so ubiquitous.

Once the Ford team figured out how coffee chaff could be used to build car parts, it reached out to McDonald's because of the restaurant chain's scale and its comparable sustainability goals, Miewelski said. Like Ford, McDonald's also wants to incorporate renewable and recycled materials into its products.

The partnership between Ford (F) and McDonald's (MCD) is an example of how brands with distinct sustainability initiatives can work together.

McDonald's recently achieved its goal of sourcing all of its US coffee sustainably, one year ahead of schedule, and is also working with competitors to develop more environmentally friendly coffee cups. When Ford approached it about the coffee chaff product a few years ago, the company was able to consider another way to make its coffee greener, said Ian Olson, senior director of global sustainability at McDonald's.

"We've conventionally thought of collaborations as within the food industry," Olson said. The Ford partnership can help McDonald's see "what kind of larger impacts are possible," when it works with a company in another sector.

"This is just scratching the surface of trying to understand what's possible," Olson said.

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3 hours ago, Sdf4786k said:

I supposed starbucks is out of the question

Why leh? They have also worked together recently, albeit in a different area.

Order Up! Ford, Amazon and Starbuck Team Up, Give Hint of Connected Car's Future


For many Americans, the day doesn’t begin without a cup of coffee to go for the commute. Now, a new alliance between Ford, Amazon, and Starbucks should make it a little faster and easier to order and pay for that morning brew.

At its annual shareholders meeting in Seattle on Wednesday, Amazon officials confirmed Ford vehicles equipped with the maker’s latest Sync3 infotainment system will be able to order and pay for their coffee by connecting to the Amazon Alexa voice assistant. It’s just the first step in what could come, over the next few years, as automakers expand the capabilities of their increasingly connected cars.

From Automaker to Tech Company?
For his part, Ford CEO Mark Fields has said the carmaker prefers to now view itself as a “mobility company,” rather than an automotive manufacturer. That means it is expanding its focus to include such things as ride and car-sharing. It is also looking for new ways to let motorists connect to the outside world.

Even before that sci-fi concept becomes an everyday reality, however, automakers are looking to give motorists more options to connect with the outside world, whether to play smartphone apps through new technologies like Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, or by integrating voice assistants — like Alexa, Apple’s Siri, and Microsoft’s Cortana — into the vehicle.

Virtual Partnerships
Amazon and Starbucks already teamed up in January, with Alexa getting a new “skill” that allowed a customer to place their “usual” order and have it waiting at one of the stores they have visited recently, Alexa even handling the charge through Starbucks’ Mobile Order & Pay function.

Ford, meanwhile, has begun incorporating Alexa into new vehicles equipped with its latest Sync 3 infotainment software. Starting later this year, that will allow a motorist to place a Starbucks order as they’re heading to one of the coffee shops. Ford already has a similar partnership allowing Sync users to order a pizza from Domino’s.

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