MyBlueCity is going digital | Interview #13 | B'ZEOS
B’ZEOS – a seaweed-based straw is just the beginning!
Ana Ferreira (BioMarine Community Manager)
We met B’ZEOS last year during the BioMarine Business Convention 2018 and we quickly saw their potential. Moved by the clear passion of its Founder and CEO, Guy Maurice, and a multidisciplinary young team, this Norwegian startup is creating a seaweed-based material capable of replacing plastic pellets that can be used by manufacturers to produce single-use plastics.
Making the most of the right momentum for blue bioplastics, B’ZEOS is now getting ready to start exciting projects and we couldn’t be more excited to know all about it!
A life changing decision
Guy Maurice has worked in many different environments, from Panama, Madagascar to Congo and Burundi, where he was involved in waste management projects. Despite the undeniable beauty and biodiversity richness of such places, there was an ever-increasing challenge of waste management. As Guy explained “I was working with waste management, helping municipalities to define better and more efficient strategies and put them into practice, which was a major challenge. During one of my Projects, I realized that despite all efforts, the waste was still being redirected to a burning landfill and all our efforts were going to waste”. Feeling like a mere spectator, and unable to push local governments to act, Guy took a life turning decision: “I decided it was time for me to make real changes…before the waste was even created!”.
The plastic straws were the final trigger!
Meanwhile, a quick stop in NYC gave him the final boost – “Being served a plastic straw, in a so-alleged organic and sustainable bar was the last drop for me. It made absolutely no sense!”. After searching for biodegradable alternatives to straws, and realizing no solutions existed so far…B’ZEOS was created! A few months later, Guy was looking at (and trying) the first straw prototypes made from seaweed- “The idea was possible, and we started to chase it!”.
Adaptability and sustainability are key
B’ZEOS developed versatile seaweed-based pellets that could be transformed in a wide variety of products and, in the end, be completely biodegradable. Also, and as Guy explained – “We wanted to develop a material that could not only be (really!) biodegradable, despite the environmental conditions, but could also be versatile enough to be used by the current plastic industry without major changes in the production processes and further investment in machinery”. This, Guy believes, “will be key to keep matching prices with current plastic solutions and a quicker adoption from the industry. Also, by developing solutions that are adaptable to current practices, we make sure our business is socially responsible. We absolutely believe this is the right path”.
An exciting pilot project is about to begin
B’ZEOS just started a partnership to develop the first industrial tests of the B’ZEOS seaweed-based pellets for the production of… straws! As Guy explained – “Straws are one of the most difficult products to make, and we want not only to strengthen the material (in terms of rigidity and solubility), but also to make the final product more price competitive by testing different seaweeds and production processes”. In the end, the goal is very well-defined - “If we can develop biodegradable seaweed-based pellets to produce straws that, in the end, can be adaptable to the current industry (with minimal changes), we are able to do so much more!”.
The results will determine what future products B’ZEOS will develop, and we are excited to know them!
The key steps from now on
B’ZEOS is now giving important steps towards their goals – “With the first pilot project, we will be able to know how to best produce our material at an industrial scale. This is crucial because we already have many industry partners waiting for this material to be tested for different products”. Also, B’ZEOS aims to be a truly sustainable company, so another important goal is “to make sure all our processes are as sustainable as possible, even in a long-term perspective. It doesn’t make sense to us to produce something that will not be sustainable in the end. We know it’s a long process, but sustainability will have to be there in the short and long-term”.
Want to know more info about B'ZEOS?
Click HERE or contact the team through the BioMarine Community!
Follow B'ZEOS on Linkedin.