VU sustainable packaging researchers feature on ABC's Landline

VU's sustainable packaging research was featured on Landline, an ABC national TV program
Tuesday 25 July 2023

The innovative work of Victoria University’s sustainable packaging researchers was recently featured on ABC TV’s national Landline program.

The segment, Planet Plastic: Ditching plastic for plant alternatives, showed how VU’s researchers are working with veggie waste from zucchini, broccoli, celery and lettuce, transforming it into environment-friendly ‘bio-packaging.’

“We apply organic chemistry to convert basically a slurry of rotting leaves and shoots into a range of functional packaging materials such as films, boards, cushions and foams,” says Professor Vincent Rouillard, who leads the team.

Catherine Velisha, who runs Velisha National Farms in Werribee South – where most of the agricultural waste is sourced – says the idea of “using produce to package produce” was an exciting prospect when the researchers first approached her.

The researchers have made promising prototypes over the past few years, but they recognise that developing packaging on a scale that can compete with plastic and other materials is a mammoth challenge.

Nonetheless, Professor Rouillard and his team continue their green revolution.

“We really think that in the coming years Australia could be one of the leading countries to create a new generation of packaging materials that are truly sustainable,” he says.

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