I have written over the years about sustainability; you may remember Ford & Jose Cuervo. Today, I’m writing about a new idea for sustainable innovation grown from the rinds and seeds of Sicily’s most famous citrus fruit — the orange.
The orange, which Sicily harvests several hundred thousand tons each year, is being used in a wide range of greener and healthier business initiatives.
The innovation is as impressive as the filtration technology used to give consumers the pulp-free OJ they drink at breakfast on a given morning!
Oranges & Textiles
In 2011, Adriana Santonocito was a design student in Milan and had an idea to make sustainable textiles from Sicilian oranges. People already knew how to extract cellulose from orange rinds, but Adriana developed a process to make fiber which could be blended and the color-dyed with other textiles such as cotton or polyester. She and her classmate Enrica Arena founded Orange Fiber in 2014 and are now selling the silk-like material to the famous Italian fashion designer Salvatore Ferragamo.
What else from the oranges?
They are also making baked goods healthier, and stay fresher, thanks to a new procedure which transforms them into an innovative fat-free flour /citrus paste. Pastazzo is flour made from the orange rinds, seeds and part of the pulp not used for juice. The “brioche” from this flour has the same taste and look of brioche made with butter/fats/oils but much healthier.
Although we’ve yet to be employed working with oranges, BHS has applied its leadership in sustainability to feedstocks and applications including:
- Corn cobs and stovers
- Wood chips
- Bagasse / Sugar cane
- Dairy waste and chicken renderings
- Algae and microbial for PHA
- Fish Oils
Or, let us know your feedstocks and we can brainstorm new ideas for sustainable innovation. In the meantime, be aware you may be wearing something that you can eat!