Fibrenamics and Mirpuri Foundation launch algae-based biodegradable bottle
A pioneer project by the Mirpuri Foundation in collaboration with Fibrenamics - Universidade do Minho led to the development of a 100% biodegradable and rapidly degrading packaging material.
Every year, more than 400 million tons of plastic are produced in the world, contributing to human action in the destruction of habitats, the extinction of species and the deterioration of health. What can be done to change this scenario? It was for this purpose that the Mirpuri Foundation, together with the Fibrenamics Interface of the University of Minho, developed The Good Bottle, an innovative packaging, 100% biodegradable.
The Good Bottle has a biodegradability rate of 74% at the end of 45 days
The new material, presented in the form of a mineral water bottle, in partnership with the Monchique Water Society, an industrial partner, promises to pave the way for a profound transformation in the world industry. A historic landmark for sustainability, to protect not only what's inside, but above all to preserve life and ecosystems.
The project comes within the scope of a protocol established between the Mirpuri Foundation and the University of Minho in 2018, for the construction of a research and development program, and which created an alternative that changes the course of mass production of plastic packaging , replacing, for example, water bottles. A competitive option, equally light, biodegradable and without harmful effects on health and the environment.
Through the Foundation's investment, the group of scientists developed a prototype that is intended to revolutionize the consumer goods industry: 100% biodegradable and compostable packaging, thus replacing disposable options with long periods of decomposition. The Sociedade da Água de Monchique is responsible for contributing to the industrial solution with this innovative material in a product that can be made available en masse to the market.
Thus, The Good Bottle was born, a product composed of a polymeric base that can be compostable in the domestic environment, which in its composition contains algae, which during degradation serve as food for marine species. The lid is also produced from the same composition, therefore having the same biodegradation characteristics.
The Good Bottle has a biodegradability rate of 74%, at the end of 45 days, and under controlled composting conditions in accordance with ISO 14855-1:2012, and 90% up to 12 months, depending on the conditions under which is exposed in accordance with the ISO 13432 standard.
Among the advantages of The Good Bottle for the conservation of the oceans, we highlight the results of the study to assess the acute toxicity carried out in the marine environment of this material, using zebrafish, which registered excellent effects compared to those registered with conventional polymers.
On the other hand, and since the bottle contains algae in its composition, they can serve as food for marine species during their rapid disintegration process. The basic composition of the material and its permanent contact with water lead to its hydrolysis within a short time horizon. The material is also biodegradable in contact with organic waste.
“This is a pioneering and innovative initiative, which aims to lead the necessary change, inspiring the most diverse sectors to offer consumers increasingly responsible choices that do not threaten the survival of future generations”, says Paulo Mirpuri, President of the Mirpuri Foundation.
For João Bessa, Technology Manager of the Fibrenamics Interface at the University of Minho, this “was without a doubt a very ambitious project, whose challenge immediately attracted us due to the emerging need to develop new sustainable solutions for the future. Not just for people, but also for Mother Nature”.
Finally, Vítor Hugo Gonçalves, CEO of Sociedade da Água de Monchique, explains that “this partnership was destined to happen. We were very honored to be invited to join this project that will change the packaging paradigm and help make the world a little better. We are proud to see our Água Monchique being the first product in the world to be packaged in The Good Bottle”, and adds that “Agua Monchique has directed much of its R&D towards more sustainable packaging solutions that significantly reduce the environmental impact of our activity. We share with Fibrenamics and Mirpuri Foundation values and, above all, a common vision in the way of looking to the future of the planet, so The Good Bottle project was immediately received and worked on by our teams with a high spirit of mission, believing that we are building something much bigger than us and that could revolutionize the world industry. Our integration in this project is mainly due to a genuine sharing of values and a common vision with Fibrenamics and the Mirpuri Foundation.”