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austeja platukyte

compostable algae-based foam packaging

using the special material processing method, a bio-foam material has been created that can be used for a new type of biodegradable packaging products

this project follows a zero-waste philosophy and seeks to shed light on an increasingly prevalent problem of environmental pollution. the resulting material prototype goes beyond the waste generation and disposal issues and addresses the problems before they occur, focusing on materials design

the problem

1. today we face a huge problem of synthetic material waste, because disposable or short-term products are made from durable materials. this also creates large economic losses due to raw and non-recyclable resources

 

2. currently, the leading materials for degradable foam packaging are derived from corn starch. producing disposable packaging from food materials is uneconomic and even unethical, because more than enough food is produced worldwide to feed the world's population, but even 811 million people are still starving

 

3. a study conducted by researchers at yale university shows that climate change-related depression is felt by as much as 70% of the US population and is growing very rapidly, especially among school-age children and youth

solution

1. algae-based packaging prototypes aim to at least partially reduce environmental pollution with solid waste - the material is completely organic and compostable, because it is made of only natural ingredients. even if this packaging has been discarded as waste, due to natural processes and micro-organisms it will again become a part of nature

 

2. the extraction of the resources required for the production of the packaging does not compete with inhabited and cultivated land areas, which are very important for the cultivation of food resources. the primary binding material for bio-foam packaging is derived exclusively from renewable marine and oceanic resources and algal waste in coastal regions

 

3. by using the product together with the biodegradable algae-based packaging, the consumer would not feel guilty about global environmental pollution, so this product improves the psychological health of consumers, thus creating additional emotional and psychological value and reducing the environmental impact of solid waste pollution

photos: karolis milasevicius