So, you probably know by now that our water bottles are made of sugarcane but believe it or not, we haven’t taken a stalk of sugarcane, filled it with water and stuck a lid on it. Maybe something for the future but here I’m going to give you all a breakdown of how it really works and why we are the ‘World’s most eco-friendly, reusable water bottle with a purpose.’
Our bottle is made of polyethylene, which is a plastic designed for repeated use. The company that produces the raw material is based in Brazil, why’s this important? Because Brazil is the biggest grower of sugarcane in the World, mostly to produce ethanol which they run their cars off. Upto 96% of cars are flex-fuel; they run on petrol and biofuel.
Now, I can sense the excitement and anticipation at the prospect of all this science but just control yourselves! So the brazilian sugarcane is taken and fermented and distilled to produce ethanol, basically alcohol, you know that you have in your beer or Pina Colada, depending on your taste. It’s worth mentioning that nearly all other plastics are produced from oil, unless they are a bioplastic (see the last blogpost on bioplastics, go on you know you want to?!), Therefore Yuhme's water bottles are produced from a renewable resource. Extremely important when we talk about our environment and sustainability for future generations.
We take our ethanol, or Pina Colada if you prefer, and this is where our manufacturer in Brazil does it’s magic. They have created a process which turns Pina Coladas into ethylene, which is subsequently polymerised (lots of ethylene is bonded together) to create polyethylene. This is then shipped to our bottle manufacturer in Sweden which produces the Yuhme water bottles in a no waste production site.
But why is Yuhme's water bottle the World’s most eco-friendly? Because that whole process I’ve described above is CO2 negative, not neutral but negative. That whole process actually absorbs more CO2 from the atmosphere than it releases. From the photosynthesis of the sugarcane, to fermenting the sugarcane, to burning the remains of the sugarcane to produce steam which is used to create electricity. This runs the plant that produces our Pina Colada plastic (polyethylene) and the excess is fed back into the grid to power homes, schools, hospitals etc.
Take a bow Brazil! It’s a brilliantly clever technique that uses a plant to its utmost and allows us to create a product that is good for the environment and humanity. Let’s all raise our Pina Coladas to that!