Quadpack partners with academia to reward microplastics research

By Julia Wray 25-Jan-2022

The Spanish packaging company’s charitable arm, in collaboration with UAB, has backed a project to detect microplastics in food, as well as reusable container solution Omnibox

<i>Quadpack CFO Bardo Bevelander with Quadpack engineers Mariola Rodríguez and Roger Oller, and Quadpack Foundation Manager Marta Gil</i>

Quadpack CFO Bardo Bevelander with Quadpack engineers Mariola Rodríguez and Roger Oller, and Quadpack Foundation Manager Marta Gil

Quadpack Foundation, the charitable branch of Spain-based beauty packaging company Quadpack, has partnered with UAB Research Park, a non-profit spin off co-created by the Autonomous University of Barcelona, to support scientific research on microplastics.

Microplastics – smaller than 5mm – can come from the breaking of larger pieces of plastics or are manufactured as such.

The presence of these plastic fragments is considered a major environmental problem, affecting ocean life, terrestrial fauna and human health.

The foundation sponsored the 12th edition of Generació d’Idees, an initiative to foster entrepreneurial spirit among researchers and doctoral students.

Multidisciplinary research groups presented their projects to a jury of academics, industry experts and the general public, following a September-December 2021 training period, involving mentoring and prototyping support.

The prize for Best Innovative Idea went to MP Food Watching, which uses hyperspectral imaging technology to detect and better visualise the presence of microplastics in food, and which was awarded €1,000 to start a crowdfunding campaign, as well as social media support and six months of incubation at UAB Open Labs (the university’s open innovation network).

Qu4tre, which included Quadpack engineers Roger Oller and Mariola Rodríguez among its members, won the Public Choice award for Omnibox.

The reusable container is a zero waste solution coupled with a logistics plan for distribution, recovery and cleaning. The group was awarded six months of incubation and social media dissemination support.

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“As an industry, we are conscious of our responsibility and we want to be part of the solution. By being connected to researchers and sharing the challenges we face, we can advance together towards a healthier world and have a positive impact on the next generations,” Marta Gil, Quadpack Foundation Manager, said of the project.

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