Finland-based Sulapac has welcomed French luxury house Chanel as an investor.
Aiming to tackle the accumulation of non-biodegradable plastics, Sulapac has developed a material said to respond to consumers’ growing desire to find environmentally friendly products or packaging.
Sulapac products use a biodegradable and microplastic-free material made of FSC-certified wood chips and natural binders. They are claimed to have all the benefits of plastic, yet biodegrade completely and leave no microplastics behind. Manufacturers can use their existing machinery with the material.
As well as winning numerous awards since being founded in 2016, Sulapac has raised funding from several investors such as Lifeline Ventures, Ardent Venture, Eerik Paasikivi, Ilkka Herlin and Saara Kankaanrinta, Planvest, and Mika Ihamuotila. In July 2018, Sulapac received the Horizon 2020 SME instrument grant from the European Union. Business Finland has also funded Sulapac. A-round funding is planned for 2019. Chanel has become the first investor coming from the cosmetics industry.
Suvi Haimi, CEO and co-founder of Sulapac, commented: ‘We have set very high-quality standard to our sustainable material, with an ambition to replace plastic, and we are very pleased to welcome Chanel, a leading brand representing the most demanding luxury segment, among our investors. Chanel is definitely one of the forerunners in the luxury segment as it wants to invest in latest sustainable material and technology innovations. Our mission to save this world from the plastic waste just became a big step closer.’
Stora Enso and Sulapac have previously signed a joint development agreement to combat the global problem of plastic waste by accelerating the use of fully renewable, recyclable and biodegradable materials in packaging. A recent development in this partnership has been renewable and biodegradable straws.
Stora Enso and Sulapac demonstrated sustainable drinking straws at Slush 2018, which targets production on an industrial scale. This is intended to replace traditional plastic straws with renewable ones. The straws are based on Sulapac’s bio-composite material made of wood and natural binders that can be recycled via industrial composting and biodegrade in marine environments.
Annica Bresky, executive vice president of the Consumer Board division at Stora Enso, said: ‘This is an important step for Stora Enso and showcases our long-term commitment to gradually replacing fossil-based materials with renewable solutions. Our collaboration with Sulapac is a great example of what we can achieve through partnership in terms of driving innovation to create sustainable solutions within the bio-economy.’