Canada supports innovative solutions to single-use coffee pods

Canada’s minister of Natural Resources, the Honourable Seamus O’Regan Jr, has announced a $1-million investment to NEXE Innovations, formerly GCUP Technology Corporation, as part of the second phase of a Bioplastics Challenge aimed at helping small businesses reduce pollution by turning forest-based residue into sustainable domestic plastic material.

With this funding, NEXE Innovations will be able to focus on Phase 2 of its project, which supports:

  • Scaling up the manufacturing process of its Nespressocompatible pods, and
  • Improving the compatibility of bioplastics derived from wood-based biomass for early-stage commercialisation.

As part of Phase 1, NEXE developed a completely plant-based and compostable single-use coffee pod from bioplastic wood fibre.

Natural Resources Canada collaborated with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada to develop this challenge as part of the Domestic Plastics Challenge under the federal government’s Innovative Solutions Canada (ISC). ISC is a $100 million programme dedicated to supporting entrepreneurs and small businesses in developing innovative and sustainable solutions to complex environmental challenges. The Government of Canada may then act as a first customer, helping these small businesses to commercialise their innovations, scale up their businesses and create good jobs for Canadians.

“Our government is dedicated to supporting entrepreneurs and small businesses. It is becoming increasingly important to invest in sustainable solutions that will support not only our economy but also our environment. When our government invests in innovative and sustainable work from small businesses like NEXE, we are growing the economy, building Canadian technological leadership and contributing to Canada’s fight against global warming,” said the Honourable François-Philippe Champagne,
minister of Innovation, Science and Industry.

Dr Zachary Hudson, chief scientific officer at NEXE Innovations, commented: “We are grateful to the Government of Canada for this award, which reflects its commitment to nurturing innovative, Canadian-made solutions to some of the world’s most challenging problems. At NEXE, we have developed and validated sustainable plant-based materials that are better for the environment without compromising on the needs of the consumer. We look forward to bringing them to market with the support of Innovative Solutions Canada.”

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