People and Leaders

Michael Carus, Person of the Year 2018

It was a logic decision to appoint Michael Carus as person of the year 2018. Michael has been the driving force behind the German and European Bioplastics movement.

Michael Carus was born on 15 October 1956 in Cologne and grew up in Wuppertal, Germany.

He’s the descendant of the famous German physiologist and painter Carl Gustav Carus (1789-1869).

Michael studied physics and mathematics in Cologne and graduated in 1983.

His dedication to the environmental cause was visible from the early start as he became manager of the ecology department of the student’s organisation of his university.

Michael continued on his ecological journey by becoming a teacher at the University of Tübingen and covered topics like ecology, nuclear energy and radioactivity (1983-1990).

It took some time before Michael found his way as he worked as a science journalist, a scientist, an IT manager and a public relations practitioner.

Michael’s career took a turn in 1994 when he co-founded the Nova Institut, the leading German bioplastics innovation organisation.

Michael published many reports and policy papers and is considered as one of the leading experts in agricultural resources and industrial materials.

Michael has also been involved in the European industrial hemp sector and has been the driving force behind the liberalisation of hemp in Europe.

Michael is a legend and an inspiration. He was the first scientist and service provider to commercially breakthrough in the bioplastics industry.

He’s the founding father and the driving force of the German bioplastics movement, knowing that Germany is one of the driving nations of the European bioplastics scene.

The German and European bioplastics industry wouldn’t have been the same without Michael’s dedication and commitment.

I’m personally grateful to Michael as he invited me to my first bioplastics conference, the “International Conference on biobased materials” which many say is the most important bioplastics event of the year. Michael was  also the first person that I interviewed.

Let’s congratulate Michael for his great achievements and for the time, energy and dedication spent to bring the bioplastics sector where it is today.

Happy Christmas and we look forward to seeing you in Cologne at the next International Conference on biobased Materials.

PS – We managed to find rare pictures of Michael!

michael carus
michael carus no beard
michael carus fields



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