Alberta-based Earthware Reusables today announced funding from the Canadian Food Innovation Network.
The Calgary-born company received over $41,000 toward designing, developing, and implementing a durable and UV-resistant food takeout container.
The container will be used as part of Earthware’s return-for-reuse takeout container program, which reduces single-use containers in Alberta’s food industry—a province first, according to the company. In Calgary alone, there are 60,000 restaurant takeout orders every night, and most of the containers are currently going to landfills.
“Earthware’s return-for-reuse container service is uniquely positioned to help businesses navigate the single-use takeout container bans happening all around the world,” stated founder John MacInnes.
The program facilitates the collection of the SUCs after food has been packaged and consumed. Implementing circular systems like this is “vital in tackling the national waste and pollution crisis Canada is facing,” according to a statement from CFIN.
To complete the project, Earthware has partnered with the Southern Alberta Institute of Technology.
“Earthware is proud to partner with SAIT to find the right design and composition for reusable containers,” said MacInnes.
Positive impacts of this project will not only influence Canada’s food sector, but will also “aid in Canada’s transition to net-zero by 2050,” CFIN noted.
“Our reusable container solution is the best option for reducing waste and is far superior both environmentally and economically to recycling and composting,” the startup claims.
Earthware was founded in Calgary in late 2021.
“We will make a sustainable difference in the reduction of waste for generations to come,” McInnes said.
The CFIN announced investments totalling more than $2.5 million across eight projects throughout Canada.
“These projects demonstrate the wide-ranging and impactful innovation that’s happening across the country,” stated CFIN CEO Joseph Lake. “Innovative Canadian companies are leveraging frontier technologies like blockchain, artificial intelligence, and IoT to transform our food industry and sustainably change the way food is produced, transported, and consumed.”
“Ensuring Canadian agri-food innovators have access to the latest technologies is crucial for Canada to remain a global leader in the industry,” said the Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry, François-Philippe Champagne. “Today’s funding highlights exciting innovative projects across that show Canada has what it takes to build a stronger and more sustainable food ecosystem.”
To date, CFIN has approved $6.9 million of funding to 27 projects.