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Edible packaging and paper from leaves: six green startups from Ukraine

Edible packaging and paper from leaves: six green startups from Ukraine
As well as paper toothbrushes passive houses from under a 3D printer, and hemp for insulation. Euromaidan Press has selected six of the most unusual environmentally-friendly startups from Ukraine.


Dmytro Bidiuk, a scientist from Sumy, created edible packages. They already decay in a month and taste like ordinary noodles. Packages can be used as ordinary ones and also specifically for food.

Source: Ukrinform

The project is the winner of the All-Ukrainian Innovation Festival and the International Startup World Cup competition in Copenhagen (Denmark). A grant of 500,000 hryvnias was provided by Carlsberg, and the startup has already found plenty of investors.

“I was thinking about such a package for a long time. But the idea of using these very components originated by chance while I was working on food technology developments. During one experiment, the mixture of protein and polysaccharide poured onto the table and formed a pellicle, which then dried up. This led me to believe that these components could be used as a basis for creating packages,” says Dmytro Bidiuk

The packages are resistant to cold and heat. They can be kept in a refrigerator or warmed up in a microwave oven as well as used during baking.


PassivDom is a startup specializing in the design and construction of fully autonomous buildings “constructed” by 3D printing. Though quite well-known by its main factory located in Nevada (USA), the project was at first initiated in Ukraine by Maksym Herbut. He was born in Mariupol – the city close to the conflict zone in Donbas. Maksym has entered the ranking of top 100 innovators in Central and Eastern Europe composed by Google and the Financial Times.

Source: Solar-Tech

The process of creating the building is fully automated and one module can be combined for one working shift. Once the frame has been created, it is insulated with vacuum panels. Then the team makes interior and exterior trim, installs energy-saving windows, doors, automatics, all engineering systems and controls.

Smart home technology is included: 200 sensors control the health and functions of the home. With this, the house can in fact think on its own: it regulates the lighting in accordance with the weather, advises when it would be better to do washing with lower energy costs, and even monitors the health of residents.

Upon request, the house may be equipped with a system for generating water from humidity in the air. More than 1,000 liters of water can be imported independently and stored in built-in tanks. The shower in the house is made “by space technology” – it uses only 9 liters per person. Water purification systems allow water to be reused.

Source: Solar-Tech


Effabrush is a disposable eco-clean toothbrush made of paper. The body is made of sugar cane paper and covered with nano-layer lamination, produced from corn starch, for a smooth and nice feeling. The bristles are made partly of castor oil and partly Nylon 4, an innovative type of Nylon, minimizing the harm to nature.

The startup was created by Ilia Kichuk and Dariya Vasylenko. It won the 1st prize at the national contest CLP Ukraine 2017 and was included to the top 5 startups in the Clim@ competition in Frankfurt. Now, the company sells its brushes in units of 1,000 sets.


Paper from leaves

A promising innovation was made by Valentyn Hrechka, still studying at school but also in the Ukrainian Minor Academy of Sciences (additional university-style studies for outstanding youth).

“My grandfather and I went into the forest. Sitting down to rest, I touched the fallen leaves and then a new thought came to me: ‘The paper is already made from straw and wood. But leaves are also a product of such plants. Leaves also contain cellulose. So why can’t paper be made from the leaves?'” – explains Valentyn from where the idea came.

Source: MHP

After a number of experiments, the paper was finally produced. Moreover, the new technology not only solves the problem of the utilization of leaves, but it is much cheaper and faster. Unlike ordinary technology, it takes only eight hours from the time leaves are collected until the final product is made.

Source: Na chasi

Hempire UA

The company has challenged the usual methods of heat insulation and housing construction, having developed hemp-based ecological material. The Hempire-mix is made from shredded stems of technical hemp, lime, and a specially developed bonding substance. The mixture is made entirely of natural materials and does not contain cement, sand or any toxic components. Created material can keep heat in the home and may be used as building material instead of concrete or brick. Some buildings were already built by the company in Ukraine and now it plans to extend to the international markets.

The grant from the EU and the EBRD will help to certify the development for further entry into European markets. After that, the team will take up the construction of bigger facilities where the insulation material will be manufactured. The competition for grant in Ukraine was organized and facilitated by yet another innovative project – Greencubator which is an ecosystem organization for sustainable entrepreneurship, low-carbon innovations and green economy development in Ukraine and Eastern Europe.

Source: Economic Pravda


Source: Economic Pravda

Sirocco Energy

Oleksandr Pryimak had been experimenting with different types of wind generators for more than three years. Eventually, he made the first model of a wind panel. In contrast to horizontal or vertical wind turbines, the wind panel has a translatory blade motion, not a rotational one. This gives the panel a scope of advantage and makes it efficient and convenient for urban usage. In traditional wind turbines, the large generator and its twisted blades create infrasound. Scirocco panels produce no infrasound and have low mechanical noise due to slower blade movement, smaller generator size and innovative blade design. More blades equals more balance and less vibration. The panel can be easily installed on roofs (unlike traditional wind generators). Also, it goes rather unnoticed and resembles a tree by its form.

Sirocco received a grant for prototype development from DIY LAB incubator (Kyiv, Ukraine) and received an initial investment from the Iot Hub accelerator. Currently, the company is working on pilot installations of the panels and further improvements.

Source: Sirocco Energy

Worldwide technology of creative recycling and its Ukrainian implementation – Zelenew

The Zelenew Recycling Laboratory is a factory where design ideas and engineering experiments serve to transform the diversity of plastic waste into practical things for your home and garden: decor, fixtures, original furniture, storage, and sorting containers, surface coatings and many other things.

Located in Lviv, the factory uses technology from the Dutch designer Dave Huckens “PreciousPlastic.” It allows you to abandon expensive industrial equipment. The plastic is crushed, heated and easily folded. The size and shape are limited only by the designer’s imagination.

“We strive for ecosystems where garbage is never a final product because it becomes material for high-speed roads, vertical farms or a convenient public space. We are looking for those who share this vision and have a talent for engineering, chemistry, and design, intellectual or financial resources to make new, more effective ecosystems possible,” the manufacturers and designers say.

Precious Plastic is a global community of hundreds of people working for the elimination of plastic pollution. Knowledge, tools, and techniques are shared online for free. So everyone can start.

In the Zelenew factory. Source: facebook

Below – things made by Zelenew

Read also:

15 innovative startups from first-ever Ukrainian Pavillion at Las Vegas electronics exposition

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