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Get Ready, All Your Favorite Chocolate Might Soon Be More Eco-Friendly

If you’re wondering what the next big environmental kick in the food world might be, just look down at your candy bar.

We probably don’t think about what happens to our candy wrappers when we gobble up that chocolate and toss the plastic in the trash, but there are companies that have actually been thinking about it.

Over the years, gourmet chocolates have tried their hand at compostable chocolate wrappers, like in 2013, when Hnina produced its “guilt free” chocolate with biodegradable wrapping.

In 2015, Alter Eco chocolate really got the ball rolling, as it became known for producing an environmentally-friendly chocolate wrapper that “you can bury in your back yard.”

Since then, the build has slowed a bit, but Seattle Chocolate just jumped on the trend in a big way, launching compostable wrappers for its truffles, and a plan for a full switch by 2020. Their new truffle wrappers are made with cellulose, a naturally abundant organic material derived from eucalyptus trees that are sustainably harvested.

On a larger scale, big players such as Mars and Nestle have a goal of making all their candies with biodegradable packaging by 2025, according to the Huffington Post UK.

Mars in particular has made some pretty big leaps, teaming with Rodenburg Biopolymers in 2016 to create a Snickers concept wrapper made of potato starch waste, and being given top honors from the Global Bioplastics Awards.

The changes in our candies might not be immediate, but you will probably start seeing gradual changes turn into dramatic changes, as we saw when restaurants jumped on the plastic straw ban trend over the last year.

So don’t be surprised if within the next couple of years your Kit Kat and M&M’s packaging start feeling a little different than what you’re used to. The changes are coming, and like we saw with straws, they can come in a blink of an eye.

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Edible Water Drop is Actually a Plastic-Free Water Bottle

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If you’re sick and tired of plastic water bottles ending up in our landfills, you may be in luck. The Ooho is a blob-shaped water container that’s plastic-free, hygienic, biodegradable, and edible. Inspired by techniques used in molecular gastronomy, the Ooho is created by shaping liquids into spheres and holds the shape with a thin membrane made from brown algae and calcium chloride.

“The double membrane protects the inside hygienically, and makes it possible to put labels between the two layers without any adhesive,” says Rodrigo Garcia Gonzalez, one of the creators of Ooho.

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Branding aside, the designers concocted this to address the fact that many people are drinking water in disposable bottles, and 80 percent of those aren’t recycled. However, the product still needs to work out a few kinks — like how to keep the package clean and how to avoid spilling water all over yourself. Another brand, Wikipearl, uses a similar technique to warp foods like ice cream and yogurt. These little “bon bons” will be available at Whole Foods soon. For now, the Ooho is on display during Milan’s Design week, and hopefully it wont be too long before we see that on shelves as well.

H/T + Picthx Fast CoExist

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Biodegradable Gum

According to a report in Critical Reviews in Oral Biology and Medicine, an average of 560,000 tons of gum is chewed each year. Pretty soon, we’re going to run out of desks and chairs to hide gum under.

Professor Terence Cosgrove, a British scientist at the University of Bristol, invented Rev 7, a water-soluble substance. The new gum is said to be 30% easier to remove from surfaces, than regular gum. Rev 7 can be dissolved by mixing water and a mild agitation over a period of 6 months, which seems long, but it’s nothing compared to the 50 years it takes for regular gum to dissolve. Through the use of polymers, it allows water to form a layer around the substance making it easier to remove.

If Rev 7 works out, it has the potential to change the world, or at least keep kids from getting gunk in their shoes and tracking it into the house.

via: Huffington Post  Photo Credit: alamy