OpenIDEO is an open innovation platform. Join our global community to solve big challenges for social good. Sign Up / Login or Learn more

Packaging using a biodegradable thermoplastic.

Making the package using a plastic made from poly lactic acid will solve the environmental issue and uses cheap renewable resources.

Photo of Avel Maro
2 2

Written by

Plastic from Poly-lactic  acid  is  more  useful  bio-based  polymer  because  it possesses  the  following properties: bio compatibility, biodegradability, good mechanical properties  and non toxicity.

The global poly-lactic acid market was estimated to be 360.8 kilo tons in 2013, which is expected to reach 1,205.3 kilo tons by 2020. (Grand View Research, 2015).

The raw materials used to produce poly lactic acid are abundant and cheap thus readily available. In Tanzania research is done to produce lactic acid (monomer and raw material for the poymer) from sisal ball. 

PLA plastic can degraded by a number of enzymes found in the natural environment.  

Idea Title

Green Plastic

Where are you / your team located?

Tanzania, Dar es Salaam

How does this Idea redesign unrecyclable small format plastic items that often end up as waste?

This idea focuses on the material used for making the plastic items. Substituting the current normally used plastic to another material that is Eco friendly.

Which use cases does your Idea apply to?

Thus idea can be applied all cases; from a single use consumer products to straws and take away coffee lids

In what geographical context or area does your Idea plan to operate / solve?

East Africa

How do you envision scaling up your Idea?

The packages can be mass produced in an industrial scale and introduced to the society as a substitute of the current non degradable plastics.

At what stage of development is your Idea?

  • Research & Early Testing: You are exploring an idea, gathering inspiration and information needed to test it with real users.

Please describe how becoming a Top Idea and working with the Think Beyond Plastics Accelerator Program will help to accelerate your solution.

Getting a chance to work with New Plastic Economy Accelerator Program will help to accelerate the solution in financial basis. Currently the solution is thoroughly researched and is feasible.

Please describe from where your Idea emerged

The idea merged from a university research. During a final year project necessary for award of bachelors degree in Chemical Engineering in University of Dar es Salaam; this research was done and is still under envelopment.

Tell us about your work experience

I am a graduate of bachelors degree in Chemical engineering form University of Dar es Salaam.


Join the conversation:

Photo of Troy Gardner

How might this material work with coffee or milk? (e.g. coffee is slightly acidic water) and can leech things easily.

Photo of Avel Maro

The material can be used for cold food products as it shows high degradation at higher temperatures ( so can't be used at such conditions). It also shows low degradation in acidic media and thus can be used to store such cold food products.