Packaging is important. Especially so when it is needed to protect items from changes in temperature during transport. But often such materials are made out of expanded polystyrene that has a terrible impact on the environment.
London based start up Aeropowder has its sights set on tackling the challenge of packaging waste. It’s weapon of choice? Feathers. Co-founders Elena Dieckmann and Ryan Robinson have created pluumo, an insulating packaging material made with feathers (pictured), which is being used to ship chilled goods.
Current thermal packaging is dominated by conventional products such as polystyrene, which are harmful for the environment. Polystyrene is derived from petroleum resources and takes hundreds of years to degrade after being used.
Pluumo sources feathers from poultry farms, which would otherwise, typically, be incinerated, sent to landfill or added to animal feed. The packaging's other components are biodegradable so it has vastly improved end of life options - however, the company is keen to encourage reuse as part of its mission to stop our 'throw-away' culture. So it offers a scheme whereby liners can be returned free of charge for repurposing.
Talk about killing two birds with one stone!