Unilever and the American biotech company Geno are pumping 120 million dollars into the development of alternatives to palm oil and ingredients based on fossil fuels, the companies announced on Thursday. The innovation will be especially useful for beauty and cleaning products.
Unilever, one of the largest producers worldwide in the $625 billion market for care and cleaning, has noticed an increasing demand for products without palm oil or fossil fuels. At the moment there are few good alternatives and that is why the company has teamed up with Geno.
“We hope to revolutionize the way cleaning agents are made. By reducing our dependence on palm oil and fossil fuels, our suppliers will also have access to alternatives, making the supply chain more resilient,” said Richard Slater, research director at Unilever.
Unilever emphasizes not to completely get rid of palm oil, but according to the first results can reduce its use by half by reducing the use of the new technology.
Geno is an American biotech company that was founded twenty years ago and has been developing sustainable materials based on plants and biological raw materials ever since. The company has already worked for major American companies such as sportswear manufacturer Lululemon and the German chemical giant Covestro.