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Climate change, pollution and other environmental crises are impacting our lives every day and creating a destructive future for the next generation of humans. We have no one to blame but ourselves. Our industrial and technological evolutions have done irreversible damage to the planet but not all hope is lost. Perhaps we could use this same technology to help save the earth? One such collaboration will soon be enacted to take care of one but highly significant problem – single-use plastic.

As of today, the single use plastic industry is valued at over 320B$, with no economically viable solution in sight. According to zdnet.com, 130 million metric tons of plastics were discarded in 2019, and nearly all single-use plastics are made from virgin petroleum, as opposed to recycled materials. A partnership between the companies Zume and Transcend Packaging aims to add sustainable production capacity by creating one of the largest specialist Molded fiber production facilities in Europe, with the aim of being fully functional by mid-2023. The first step of this facility will be to distribute over 500 million units of molded fiber snap lids for hot beverage cups.

Zume explains that its process uses biomass derived from agricultural waste and converts the natural plant fibers into advanced molded fiber products, which can provide an alternative to single-use virgin plastics. The company says its molded fiber snap lids are functional, leakproof, and compostable, as well as being 100% PFAS-free as part of its partnership with a global producer of specialty chemicals.

“It is clear there is a bright future for sustainable packaging that is aligned with current and pending legislation as more brands challenge their current assumptions and look for creative alternatives.” Said Lorenzo Angelucci, CEO of Transcend Packaging, while commenting on the company’s excitement to be working with Zume in order to find a technological solution to a problem that seems unsolvable.