For new technology, there's nothing like getting world leaders to carry around your product for a little extra buzz. Just ask Bockatech Ltd., developer of plastic foaming technology to make reusable polypropylene cups.
Both Barack Obama and Joe Biden (and others) were photographed holding the blue, reusable coffee cups at the COP26 climate summit, which ended Saturday in Scotland.
The company said the summit was using its reusable, recyclable injection molded foamed PP cups to cut down on an estimated 250,000 single-use cups that would normally be used at the two-week event.
PN's Catherine Kavanaugh dove into the interesting technical details in this article, like how the process can achieve injection molding speeds for the foam cup similar to regular molding of unfoamed packaging.
The project also highlights pilot efforts to make reuse, as opposed to single-use, more practical. It's an area that people thinking about the evolution of packaging, like the U.S. Plastics Pact, are giving more attention to. NGOs like Upstream have made reuse a priority.
A foamed cup made with PP resin is also counter to the conventional narrative we always see about plastics, that it's use in packaging is always in single-use. There's a strong potential role for its reuse applications as well. Every material has carbon and pollution impacts and plastics in a reuse situation can do well.
At Glasgow, the cups were collected, washed and sent out again. As you'd expect, Bockatech has life cycle studies comparing the environmental impact of its cups to both single-use and other reusables.