Ocean plastic food trays to fight COVID-19
03 June 2020
Restaurants in Europe are starting to reopen their doors as governments relax COVID-19 self-distancing measures but health and hygiene remain top of the agenda. Set against this backdrop, Norwegian company ZincIn is launching ocean plastic food trays that leverage integrated antimicrobial safety technology from Dutch company Parx Materials. The natural trace element found in the trays is vital to the human immune system and protects against bacteria and viruses without needing to wipe the trays clean. According to third-party testing, the innovation boasts approximately 99.9 percent fewer germs than those found on conventional food trays.
ZincIn’s food trays are made from recycled fishing industry equipment like ropes and cages, which are big contributors to the global plastic pollution crisis. In the summer of 2017, Norwegian Plastic Recycling (NOPREC) launched a new granulation line in a small location called Matmortua outside Trondheim, Norway. After test-running and fine-tuning the plant, high-quality plastic raw materials are now being produced from fishing industry pollution to create recycled products such as ZincIn’s food trays.
The food trays are fitted with a unique technology that keeps them “clean constantly.” The technology integrates a human trace element that is vital for the immune system in the plastic. The integrated element makes the surface of the plastic material resistant to all germs, keeping the surface hygienic without adhesion and proliferation of these germs. ZincIn highlights that the solution “makes very good sense” in preventing the spread of COVID-19 and other viruses.
“Working with the Parx Materials antimicrobial technology sparked a whole new array of possibilities that can bring benefits and advantages to our lives,” notes Kjetil Christoffersen, Founder of ZincIn. “Combining it with the NOPREC recycled material that has served our food chain already before and now once again, seemed a logical step.”
Inspired by the vision and product concepts of ZincIn, Parx Materials joined Christoffersen as a shareholder and board member in ZincIn, making it “a strong alliance for the Scandinavian market and beyond, with more interesting products ahead.”
A first customer has purchased more than 10,000 of the ocean waste hygienic serving trays and consumers can expect to find them at fast-food restaurants soon, ZincIn confirms.
The use of recycled ocean plastic in packaging is widely championed as a proactive way to achieve increased environmental sustainability. Last year, Coca-Cola unveiled the “first-ever” plastic bottle made using marine litter that is of food-grade quality. Approximately 300 bottles have been produced using 25 percent recycled marine plastic retrieved from the Mediterranean Sea and beaches. Coca-Cola reports that the technology behind its first-ever marine plastic bottles has “big implications” in transforming low-quality plastic into high-quality food-grade packaging.
In non-food applications, Jokey recently introduced buckets containing 25 percent ocean plastic obtained from plastic collections on Mediterranean and North Sea beaches. Also, Sana Packaging launched its second line of glass jars with lids made from reclaimed ocean plastic in partnership with Oceanworks.
Published by foodingredientsfirst.com on May 25, 2020
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