Solving the challenge of plastics and recycling requires a multi-pronged approach and our Sustainability team recently partnered with the Soft Plastics Recycling scheme and Auckland University students by holding a competition to come up with new and innovative ways to reuse soft plastics.
Fonterra’s Director Category, Strategy & Innovation, Mark Piper says, “reusing plastics is a global opportunity that needs a new mindset and innovative ideas to help find solutions.”
The winning team ‘For What it’s Earth’ presenting their solution to judges
23 teams were given a week to come up with innovative ways to solve the challenge to create a product/service concept that will enable a greater demand for recycled soft plastics here in Aotearoa.
The five finalists then presented their solutions to a panel of judges including Malcolm Everts, Chair of the Soft Plastics Scheme and Fonterra’s Mark Piper, Sarah Bayliss (Fonterra Packing Innovation Manager) and Lee Stewart (Fonterra’s Head of Corporate Sustainability).
“It was really encouraging to see the depth of talent and ideas presented. These were real-world, practical solutions to a real-world problem and it was great to see,” Lee says.
Lance Zhang and Kelly Ding from the team ‘For What It's Earth’ took out the top spot with their concept for modular furniture for primary schools. The team said, "this competition really challenged us to rethink New Zealand’s plastics problem, to use innovative design thinking and to (literally) think outside the box!”