Innovation Exchange: Towards Net Zero Fibre Bottle Challenge

The Net Zero Catalyst is supporting Pulpex to find a provider to analyse recycled paper fibre and alternative biomass sources for a fibre bottle moulding process.

Opportunity Details


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The selected applicant will receive of up to £25,000 to support their project. Benefits may also include support from Innovate UK Business Connect, potential business collaboration, and more.


Innovate UK Business Connect

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The Net Zero Catalyst is supporting Pulpex in their search for a solution provider capable of technically analysing recycled paper fibre and alternative biomass sources. These materials must be suitable for a fibre bottle moulding process, aligning with the goal of significantly reducing the carbon footprint of paper packaging solutions and meeting the sustainability requirements of the industry and major corporate clients.

The challenge aims to identify viable alternatives to virgin cellulose materials to foster a low carbon paper packaging industry. The solution provider will purpose and technically analyse alternative biomass sources and recycled paper fibre for use in a fibre bottle moulding process. These alternatives should be scalable and aim for potential future certification for liquid food use, setting new environmental standards for packaging.

The core objective of this challenge is to explore and technically analyse a range of alternative materials, specifically focusing on recycled paper fibre and other biomass sources such as bagasse or hemp, which are potential candidates for an innovative fibre bottle moulding process. These materials are required not only to meet sustainability and recyclability standards but also to align with the ambitious goal of significantly reducing the environmental impact of paper packaging solutions.

The ideal solution will demonstrate a deep understanding of the physical and chemical properties of various biomass sources and their suitability for high-quality, scalable fibre bottle production. This includes evaluating the potential of these materials to maintain the integrity and safety standards required for packaging consumable goods, particularly liquids, which necessitates adherence to food-grade specifications. Furthermore, the solution must consider the compatibility of these alternative materials with existing recycling infrastructures to ensure they contribute to a circular economy, enhancing the lifecycle of packaging materials from production through to recycling.

Key to this challenge is the scalability of the proposed solutions. The ability to implement these materials in a commercial setting, producing fibre bottles at a scale that meets the demands of large food corporations. This entails a comprehensive analysis of the supply chains for these alternative materials, assessing their availability, sustainability credentials, and the logistics of their integration into current manufacturing processes.


For this challenge, the selected applicant will have the opportunity to collaborate directly with the challenge holder, implementing their innovative solution. Additionally, they will gain access to grant funding of up to £25,000 to support their project.

The benefits package for a successful applicant may also include:

  • Support from Innovate UK Business Connect
  • Support in the development of a prototype or pilot
  • Technical support
  • Invitation to attend or present at Innovate UK Business Connect events
  • A potential business collaboration
  • Investor introductions (if investment is required)
  • Support if any Innovate or similar competitions are relevant.


Entrants to this competition must be small or medium sized enterprises (SME), UK based/UK registered, which have not exceeded their Minimum Financial Assistance limit (or De Minimis, where relevant).

For full functional and technical requirements, visit the link below.


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