Have you ever tried looking for packaging alternatives whenever you shop to help reduce your carbon footprint but can’t due to lack of resources? Good news. A Bath-based Biotech startup is in the works of developing sustainable bioplastic packaging of the future.
Kelpi is a sustainable biotechnology startup that focuses on creating sustainable packaging solutions to help reduce the contribution to plastic waste in the world. The world produces over 300 million tonnes of plastic waste every year, resulting in a high carbon footprint that negatively affects the environment.
Recently, the company acquired £320k pre-seed funding from various investors, namely, Innovate UK’s ‘Combined Investor Partnership’ grant landed through SETsquared’s highly successful Regional Angel Investment Accelerator (RAIA) program, the Bristol Private Equity Club (BPEC), and other angel investors.
Accelerating the Bioplastic Development
Kelpi is set to focus its funding on accelerating and scaling up its development of bioplastic packaging prototypes. The company aims to develop a sustainable packaging option that is compostable, marine-safe, and carbon negative. In previous years, they have been developing solutions in laboratories to replace single-use plastics with robust and high-performing seaweed-based bioplastic.
Kelpi Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and co-founder Niel Morris stated, “This landmark investment enables Kelpi to advance its work as one of just a handful of companies worldwide using seaweed to create entirely new bioplastic packaging solutions.”
He added, “This funding will allow us to accelerate progress towards achieving that goal using seaweed, a natural, renewable biomass, that has huge potential to sequester carbon and sustainably address climate change.”
Replacing Plastic with Seaweed
Based in Bath, England, Kelpi aims to replace single-use plastics with bioplastics that maximize the properties and environmental benefits of seaweed. The company boasts a world-class research and development team that strives to develop safe packaging alternatives for the land and sea.
Moreover, the biotech startup is currently focusing on producing packaging with thin films, which produce the lowest rate of recycling. According to World Wildlife Fund (WWF), thin plastic films contribute to less than 1% of recyclables in the United Kingdom (UK).
Kelpi is currently sourcing and partnering with seaweed suppliers in Europe and Asia to further their alternative bioplastic development. Kelpi has also produced compostable bioplastic packaging for food and beverages, soon reaching supermarket shelves in the UK.
Creators Behind the Sustainable Bioplastic
Kelpi is comprised of a team of advanced research and development professionals who are dedicated to eradicating single-use plastics, forever. Niel Morris and Murray Kenneth founded Kelpi on July 7, 2020.
CEO Niel Morris is an entrepreneur who has launched several startups and grown businesses in the technology, media, marketing, and retail sectors. He achieved his Masters of Business Administration in Henely Business School in 2000.
Photo Credit: Kelpi
Chief Operations Officer (COO) Murray Kenneth founded the company with Morris, with an extensive entrepreneurial background across numerous sectors. He graduated from Heriot-Watt University with a Masters in Business Administration.
Driving Single-use Plastics to Extinction
In efforts to reduce the plastic waste epidemic, Kelpi is dedicated to providing greener alternatives to the packaging habits of the world. With the sheer amount of waste products, specifically plastic waste, produced by the global population, recycling alone is no longer enough to help the environment. By resorting to eco-friendly and sustainable options, the world can take one step closer to fostering a greener and healthier environment.