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25 May 2023

‘Plastic is yesterday’s material’: Sustainable packaging innovator Xampla on how it can allow global food and beverage brands to deliver ‘breakthrough’ new product developments

‘Plastic is yesterday’s material’: Sustainable packaging innovator Xampla on how it can allow global food and beverage brands to deliver ‘breakthrough’ new product developments

Meet Xampla, the British company innovating solutions for two separate industry challenges: plastic pollution and the protection of valuable vitamins and nutrients. Food-Navigator Europe caught up with Stanley Mitchell, Head of Business Development at Xampla, to learn more about the company’s pioneering work that hopes to enable sustainable nutrition for today’s conscientious consumers.

Sustainable packaging innovator Xampla, a University of Cambridge spin-out, was this year named one of the world’s most promising global cleantech companies in the annual Cleantech 100 rankings. Describing itself as an expert in ‘drop-in, high-performance natural materials’, it is working with global brands to deliver breakthrough new product developments and plastic-free replacements.

Using patented technology which structures plant proteins – typically pea – and other sustainable feedstocks into functional materials it has developed a range of new product innovations for the food and beverage industry.

These innovations aim to tackle two pressing but distinct challenges: 1) plastic pollution, and 2) the need to protect the bioavailability of important ingredients in food and drink products, such as vitamins and nutrients.

The ‘world’s first’ edible packaging​

For example, to reduce plastic pollution, the company has created 100% plant-based, vegan and gluten-free edible flexible films that function as a natural plastic free alternative for single-use plastics. Working with meal kit company Gousto, Xampla subsequently brought to market the world’s first edible stock cube​ wrapper to replace single-use plastic sachets, which enabled customers to eat their product – packaging and all.

Next, fulfilling an entirely different function, Xampla’s plant-based microcapsules have been created to provide improved nutrient stability for brands who are seeking to fortify beverages with additional vitamins and other actives. Thanks to this innovation, in collaboration with global beverage manufacturer Britvic, Xampla developed microcapsules to encapsulate vitamin D in fortified drinks​ and protect degradation of vitamins during the storage and transit process.

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