The Ministry of Environment, Science, Technology, and Innovation (MESTI) in collaboration with the Norwegian Development Assistance Programme, and the Basel Convention Coordinating Centre (BCCC), have developed new packaging products made of algae and other natural resources to replace the use of plastic for packaging in Ghana as part of their Pilot Project on Edible and Compostable Packaging under the Marine Litter and Microplastics Project.
The products were introduced at the the Launch of the Pilot Project at the Vikings Hostel in The University of Ghana on 18th January, 2023.
Speaking at the event, Mr. Oliver Boakye said products made of degradable materials will be used to replace the use of plastics in the near future and will be conducive for consumption.
This project is meant to, first of all, prevent the movement of illegal and non recyclable plastics into the country. It is meant to enable us to manage the plastics we have in the country effectively, and one particular component of it is how we reduce plastic waste from being created in the first place. And so, under this project, we all know how sachet water and the plastic that are used to package them are creating problems for us in this country. This project, particularly one that is going to be highlighted today is one that replaces sachet water with what we call edible packaging material, which means that once you buy water, the material that has been used to package is also edible.
Also speaking at the event, Mrs. Lydia Essuah, the Director of the policy planning, Monitoring and Evaluation directorate of MESTI, said the project is also aimed at providing alternatives to the use of plastics.
As part of the implementation of the project, six final projects are being rolled and are at various stages of completion. One of the pilots is the edible and compostable packaging. The primary objective of this pilot is to demonstrate the potential of edible and compostable packaging as a sustainable alternative to phase out single use plastics, sachet water, bottles, as well as food and sources containers. The products are flexible packaging solutions made from edible seaweed and plant extracts, making them more environmentally friendly plastics.
The products, branded Ooho!, comprise of paper food boxes, water bags, and other forms of food packaging. These products are made of algae and other plant extracts. They are labelled as edible and safe to consume, as well as bio-degradable so that they do not pose a threat to the environment.
The launch included a test pilot of a new sachet water pouch that is both safe to consume & easily digestible. Speaking on behalf of @UnivGh_VC, @IESS_UG Director, Prof. Kwasi Appeaning Addo thanked the Ministry for including UG in the project and pledged @UnivofGh's support. 2/2 pic.twitter.com/fmujDHHaRa
— University of Ghana (@UnivofGh) January 18, 2023
Story by Deborah Yakohene | univers.ug.edu.gh