Notpla boosted by Earthshot win
Wednesday, December 14, 2022
Sustainable plastic-free packaging developer Notpla has received a £1m boost to its ambitions after winning an Earthshot Prize.
The Earthshot Prize was created by Prince William and is in its second year. The £50m prize fund is being awarded to five projects a year over the course of a decade.
The aim is to help scale “the best and most ingenious solutions to repair and regenerate our planet”.
The prizes were announced at a ceremony in Boston, USA, earlier this month, with David Beckham announcing UK-based Notpla as the winner of the Build a Waste Free World category.
Members of the Notpla team watched the ceremony from a London hotel while being filmed by the BBC ahead of the big reveal.
“This is a tremendous acknowledgement of all the incredible effort by our wonderfully committed and diverse team, and we are honoured to have been recognised for this critical work,” the firm said.
Notpla’s products are made from seaweed and plant materials and are naturally either edible, ore biodegradable and home compostable.
Notpla products and seaweed raw material
The range includes the ‘Ooho’, an edible bubble designed to replace single-use plastics for liquids and hydration-on-the-go at sporting events.
Other products include Notpla coating, which makes takeaway food containers fully biodegradable; Notpla Paper, made using the leftover seaweed fibres; Notpla Film for flexible packaging; Notpla Rigid, an alternative to rigid plastics; the Notpla Pipette for single-serve edible oils; and Notpla Pearls single-dose spheres.
Notpla is not a bio-plastic. “We share similar status with natural organic materials, just like a fruit peel,” the firm explained.
Coveris is the exclusive development and print partner for Notpla’s coated board packaging. Coveris uses water-based inks for the food-contact approved packs, and said the oil barrier function “outperforms plastic in most applications”. Notpla has a partnership with Just Eat for the large-scale launch of seaweed-coated takeaway food boxes.
Notpla was co-founded by Rodrigo Garcia Gonzalez and Pierre Paslier, who met while studying Innovation Design Engineering at Imperial College London and the Royal College of Art, where they developed the Ooho.
At the end of last year the firm secured a £10m Series A funding round involving Horizons Ventures as lead investor, with existing investors Astanor Ventures, Lupa Systems and Torch Capital also taking part.
The other Earshot Prize categories are: Protect and Restore Nature, Clean Our Air, Revive Our Oceans and Fix Our Climate.
Notpla is a member of Seaweed for Europe, a coalition that aims to develop and scale the European seaweed industry as a sustainable growth engine for the continent.