Launched in March 2017, the NaturALL Bottle Alliance is a research consortium formed by Danone, Nestlé Waters and bio-based materials development company Origin Materials. The Alliance aims to accelerate the development of innovative packaging solutions made with 100% sustainable and renewable resources. In 2018, PepsiCo, Inc. joined the Alliance to advance the shared goal of creating beverage containers with a significantly reduced carbon footprint.
Why does it matter
Currently, the only products that can be found on the market are limited to 30% bio-based makeup. Danone is convinced that it is possible to replace fossil materials traditionally used by bio-based renewable materials.
The ambition of Nestlé Waters and Danone and Pepsico, Inc. is to establish a circular economy for packaging by sourcing sustainable materials and creating a second life for all plastics. These materials can allow for a more sustainable use of natural resources and the protection of the environment.
The NaturALL Bottle Alliance will bring the first 100% bio-based PET bottle to commercial scale by 2025.
How does it work
This project uses only raw materials originating from biomass feedstocks, such as previously used cardboard and sawdust, so it does not divert resources or land from food production for human or animal consumption. The alliance is also contemplating the use of other raw materials depending on the location of production units, like rice husks or other agricultural waste.
After producing samples of 80% bio-based PET at pilot scale in 2017, the Alliance has made further progress toward its goal of bringing its breakthrough technology to full commercial scale. It has notably selected a site in Sarnia, Ontario (Canada) (with the assistance of Bioindustrial Innovation Canada), and begun construction of its demonstration-scale plant which is expected to have a capacity of 18,000 tons of biomass and be fully operational by 2020.
Following that milestone, the Alliance plans to increase production to 95% bio-based PET and achieve full commercial-scale soon after. Alliance members plan to continue their joint Research & Development efforts to increase the level of bio-based content, with the ultimate objective of reaching 100%.
How does it create value
Danone, Nestlé Waters and PepsiCo, Inc. are providing expertise and teams, as well as financial support, to help Origin Materials develop and make 100% bio-based and recyclable packaging available to all in record time.
Just like the PET from fossil origins that is commonly used today for our packaging, this new-generation PET will be light, transparent, recyclable and will ensure optimal protection of its contents, all while improving the environmental footprint.
The added value of this technology is that it exclusively uses biomaterials that do not compete with resources intended for food production. This technology represents thus a major scientific advancement for the agri-food industry.
For the Alliance, it is essential that the entire industry benefits from this new eco-friendly material. It will be thus available for other stakeholders in the sector. This approach illustrates the commitment of these four partners who chose 'open innovation'.
“By bringing together major players and pooling our complementary expertise and resources, we can make 100% renewable and recyclable PET plastic at commercial scale a reality. We also expect to see additional opportunities for this breakthrough technology.”
Frédéric Jouin, Head of Research and Development for plastic materials at Danone