The Future of Food Packaging

How one student could dissolve plastic from a $40Billion industry

By: Worksmith

We often wonder: ‘How can we reduce the amount of plastic we use with takeaway and fast-food options?’. It’s a mountain-sized problem, but over in the UK, Product Design student Holly Grounds has made a boulder-sized dent in it.

Grounds has created (and successfully tested) a bio-based packaging solution for the instant noodle industry (we say industry because globally, the instant noodle market is currently valued at around US$42.2 Billion), and in doing so has also created potential game-changer for the entire food industry.

Equal parts delicious and convenient, the problem with instant noodle packaging is that there’s often more plastic than noodle. The product is usually cooked and consume within 10 minutes, but the packaging will take over 80 years to decompose.

Grounds’ solution? An edible, starch-based bioplastic is incorporated with dried spices and flavourings (this is achieved during the manufacturing stage), and then dissolves when it comes into contact with boiling water.

Essentially, Grounds’ design has turned her packaging from the scrap into the sauce. And to add further promise to the cause, the parcels of noodles (i.e. A party pack) are packaged in a wax-coated paper outer.

Totally plastic-free noodles. There’s hope for future generations, yet!

Check out more of Holly's innovative ideas here.