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Bioplastics From Fish Guts and One Cod Can Make 1400 Bags

Lucy Hughes, a 23-year-old student at the University of Sussex, has developed MarinaTex - a bioplastic made from organic fish waste and red algae.

While fish guts are likely to make most people feel rather queasy, one inventive student has used the offcuts to make a new plastic alternative.

Lucy Hughes, a 23-year-old student at the University of Sussex, has developed MarinaTex – a bioplastic made from organic fish waste and red algae.

The plastic is translucent and flexible, making it perfect to use in place of single-use packaging.

But while it might look and feel like plastic, the fishy alternative is actually stronger, safer and more sustainable, according to Ms Hughes.

She said: “Plastic is an amazing material, and as a result, we have become too reliant on it as designers and  engineers. It makes no sense to me that we’re using plastic, an incredibly durable material, for products that have a  life-cycle of less than a day.

“For me, MarinaTex represents a commitment to material innovation and selection by incorporating sustainable, local and circular values into design.

“As creators, we should not limit ourselves to designing to just form and function, but rather form, function and footprint.”

MarinaTex biodegrades after four to six weeks, and surprisingly, requires little energy and low temperatures to produce.

Amazingly, Ms Hughes says that one Atlantic cod could generate as many as 1,400 bags.

Based on her invention, Ms Hughes has been awarded the UK James Dyson Award, and will receive £2,000. She’ll now move on to the international round of the competition for a chance to win £30,000.

fish guts cod bioplastics
Lucy Hughes

REFS

Published on mirror.co.uk

Student makes biodegradable plastic from fish guts – and one cod can make 1,400 bags

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