Six circular startups have been selected for the Circular Factory program of BlueCity and Tekkoo: Bakkersgrondstof, Biophilica, BlueBlocks, Fairm, MaGie Creations and Nature’s Principles. In the coming year, these startups will start preparing for their own circular factory.
The chosen startups
In May, interested startups could apply for Circular Factory. Out of more than 25 applications, six Circular Factory participants were selected by an expert panel, in no particular order:
- Bakkersgrondstof is led by three passionate bakers who collect excess bread from bakeries, and reprocess it into a tasty bread flour. Their goal is to close the loop of the 130,000 loaves of bread that are left on the shelf at Dutch bakeries every day.
- Biophilica is a startup that makes an alternative to leather from green waste. The material is compostable, recyclable and locally made, and can be used for shoes, bags and watch bands, among other things.
- BlueBlocks develops biomaterials, mainly from seaweed. Their main product is SeaWood, a building material made from brown seaweed. This 100% natural, compostable and chemical-free sheet material can be used as a building material, for interior products and acoustic wall panels.
- Fairm uses fermentation with a fungus, to make building materials from local lignocellulosic biomass. This ‘Fairm Foam’ is a natural alternative for (foam) insulation in construction.
- MaGie Creations works with beer grain, a fiber and protein-rich barley fraction that remains after brewing beer. They upcycle this residual flow into an ingredient that can be used for food production: PowerFlour.
- Nature’s Principles is scaling up a new L-lactic acid production process, enabling more sustainable and cost-effective production of lactic acid. Lactic acid is used in cleaning formulations and food preservation, among other things. A residual flow of European sugar beet is used as raw material for this process.
In the upcoming summer months, the startups will work on clarifying their challenges and questions, in order to get their circular factory off the ground. During the Pitch & Plug Event atBlueCity on Tuesday 20th September, they will present this to a network of possible financiers, facilitators, partners and experts. At this event, a tailor-made ecosystem will be created around Bakkersgrondstof, Biophilica, BlueBlocks, Fairm, MaGie Creations and Nature’s Principles. The following seven months will be devoted to preparing the development of the circular factory, with peer-to-peer sessions, expert sessions and writing the business plan for the factory. In May 2023, the (current) startups will present their plans, and we will raise a glass to the successful scaling up and opening of six new circular factories.