Companies tackle food waste with latest eco-friendly innovations
As reported in The Innovation Outlook, young people are focused on reducing waste in all areas of their lives, especially when it comes to food waste. Half of Trendsetters believe that a brand is innovative if it creates sustainable products, and these new eco-friendly initiatives are scoring major brownie points with today’s environmentally-motivated youth.
Four in ten Zs worry about the environment and climate change, prompting them to seek out eco-friendly alternatives to everyday items. Bio-design company makegrowlab has developed a method to turn a Scoby—a byproduct of the kombucha fermentation process—into food packaging that’s edible, reusable, and compostable. Makegrowlab’s packaging acts as a natural barrier against oxygen, microbiomes, and water—all factors that speed up the spoiling process. On top of being used to wrap items, the material can also easily stick to bowls and other storage containers, making it a great replacement for cling film. The Scoby packaging is in high demand, with most products sold out online.
Alpro launched a sustainable packaging initiative aimed at a different category of consumers: the vegan community. The British vegan food brand unveiled its Plant Based Bucket this past March, which was filled with a completely meatless version of a UK favorite, fried chicken and french fries (a.k.a. chips), complete with a creamy vegan garlic dip. If consumers were still peckish after their meal, they could just chow down on the bucket, which was made of a combination of seeds, spices, and nuts. Food brands that can hop aboard this growing edible packaging trend stand to win favor in the eyes of modern youth who appreciate when companies do their part to help save the environment.
One-third of global food produce is either lost or wasted, and Apeel Sciences is tackling the issue of food waste by addressing its main contributor: food spoilage. The California-based startup developed a protective layer that can either be sprayed on or dipped into to increase produce shelf life. The formula also lessen the need for refrigeration, making for easier transportability. Today, consumers can purchase Apeel’s avocados in nationwide Costco and Harps Food stores. The startup is working to include other fruits and vegetables in its offerings while also expanding globally.
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