September 22, 2020

Plastic-free packaging made from sugarcane waste developed by Israeli startup

W-Cycle, an Israeli foodTech startup has developed SupraPulp, plastic-free packaging made of sugarcane waste that is fully compostable, safe, yet durable enough to be used for greasy, wet or hot food. Packaged food with SupraPulp can be frozen and heated with either an oven, convection oven, steam cooker or microwave.

SupraPulp is patented, field-tested, and an ideal replacement for plastic, aluminum or foam containers. It is made from 100% renewable sugarcane fibers, called bagasse, the dry, pulpy fibrous matter that remains after sugarcane or sorghum stalks are crushed to extract their juice.

SupraPulp is compostable, non-coated, toxin and metal-free. The containers have unique characteristics compared to standard bagasse containers that make them the ideal alternative to plastic trays for food products, especially fresh, frozen, or prepared consumer packaged meals. While standard pulp products cannot sustain liquids and oils, SupraPulp containers are oil — and water-resistant and avoid any absorption or leakage. CPET plastic trays are typically used in for ready-meal packaging. SupraPulp, just like CPET, is ideal for ready meals since it is suitable for freezer-to-oven/microwave convenience. Fresh meat, poultry & seafood are also commonly packed in plastic (PE, PET, Styrofoam) due to their juice runoff. SupraPulp is a great replacement as it will not absorb them, leak or soften. Following years of R&D efforts, W-Cycle’s new SupraPulp material is able to be frozen to -40°C and reheated to 270°C (-40°F and reheated to 518°F), inviting a comprehensive range of food applications. After use, the package can be disposed of as organic waste.

“Dispose SupraPulp packages the same way as you would your salad,” said Lior Itai, CEO and co-founder of W-Cycle, through a release. “This food-grade, compostable packaging is a one-to-one replacement for its plastic counterpart. There are other compostable solutions on the market, but SupraPulp has game-changing functionality consumers need when they want to heat, freeze, or microwave convenience food products.”

Other green solutions such as bioplastic made from the whole plant need to be specially grown, harvested, and processed. SupraPulp is made from the waste upcycled from sugarcane, or similar crops such as wheat, bananas, etc.

“COVID-19 is drawing consumers’ attention to how we treat our planet and the future of the environment,” said Joseph Siani, CTO and co-founder of W-Cycle. “There is greater demand — and pressure — on brands to offer environmentally responsible products. Providing a compostable solution for ready meals, and meat products allows us to help food manufactures as well as consumers ditch plastic containers and create a cleaner environment. Together, we can put end to plastic pollution. We are currently marketing SupraPulp trays and connecting with strategic distributors, the demand is outstanding.”







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