We couldn’t be more excited about this year’s Innovation Competition winners: Full Cycle Bioplastics, Grow Bioplastics, and NeuWorld Plastics. These three businesses stood out not only for their innovative product designs, but also for their unique and promising business applications. They each display incredible potential to change the plastic industry.
Full Cycle Bioplastics (FCB) won Most Innovative Business. They transform organic waste into PHA, a fully compostable and cost competitive bioplastic. PHA is a sustainable, closed-loop replacement for petroleum plastics. With their loop-closing technology, FCB can re-use the bioplastic resin repeatedly after a consumer good reaches the end of its lifecycle—a true circular economy application, and a very unique business model.
Grow Bioplastics won Most Innovative Emerging Business. They are replacing landfill-bound, oil-based plastic sheets (which are commonly used in farming, greenhouse, and nursery operations) with affordable, closed-loop products made from lignin (a safe organic waste product from the paper industry). In other words, Grow Bioplastics is replacing petroleum-based plastic sheets with safe and sustainable ones, while also delivering economic and environmental benefits to farmers.
NeuWorld Plastics won Most Innovative Business Idea. NeuWorld Plastics is catalyzing the development of a compostable alternative to the petroleum-based plastic films currently used in single-serving food packets. Single-serve disposable plastic is a new “hot spot” for plastic pollution, and Neuworld Plastics’ innovative idea promises a measurable reduction of this pollution.
This September, these three businesses will join the 2016 Accelerator cohort. We believe they each have an enormous potential to provide the engine for a real disruption to the global plastic pollution problem – financially viable, market-based alternatives to conventional petroleum-based plastics. This year, three steps were taken in the right direction.