Developing cost-effective biobased materials as clean alternatives to synthetic polymers
Today, we’re announcing a new collaboration with Bioweg, a producer of highly functional and customizable biobased materials. Our partnership aims to optimize the production of bacterial cellulose and to produce novel variants of cellulose with improved performance to serve a variety of end markets.
Bioweg’s products are made of biodegradable bacterial cellulose and have already been tested and implemented by companies as an effective substitute for widely used synthetic polymers such as acrylates, polyethylene, and polystyrene. Synthetic polymers often appear as microbeads (i.e., micropowders) and texturants (i.e., Rheology modifiers) in products throughout cosmetics, homecare, personal care, agricultural coatings, and other industries, which contribute to microplastic pollution in waters worldwide. It is estimated that an average person could be ingesting about 5 grams of plastic each week (PDF) through the consumption of common foods and beverages. These microplastics are non-biodegradable and may carry toxic chemicals. Regulatory agencies and communities around the world are starting to regulate microplastics contamination. Just last year, the European Chemical Agency announced phasing out microbeads in ‘rinse-off’ and ‘leave-on’ cosmetics.
Leveraging our strain engineering and screening capabilities to deliver biobased solutions at scale
“Consumers and companies are united in their commitment to finding better performing and more sustainable alternatives for everyday products to break the chain of microplastic pollution. Our solutions are not just tackling a major environmental, sustainability and health problem, but also present a robust market opportunity to replace plastic polymers in care, coatings, chemicals, and other industries,” said Prateek Mahalwar, CEO at Bioweg. “We believe Ginkgo’s strain engineering and screening capabilities can enable us to deliver our biobased solutions at scale and competitive pricing.”
Bioweg is addressing a significant need in the marketplace to develop and produce a new generation of clean alternatives to synthetic polymers. We are committed to supporting the shift to sustainable and biobased high-performance alternatives and are thrilled to be working with Bioweg to address the pressing issues of microplastics contamination and promote responsible consumption.
Find the full press release here along with all of the latest news from the Ginkgo team.
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