American automaker Ford announced a partnership with ketchup company Heinz to use tomato fibers to make car parts.
Heinz proposed an innovative way to develop a sustainable composite material, a new form of bio-plastic. The intention is to reuse the peels, stems and seeds from the two million tons of tomatoes they use annually to produce their number one product.
The dried tomato skins will be turn into storage bins inside Ford vehicles and into wiring brackets.
Their aim is to lower the environmental impact than we get from the current petroleum-based materials. “We are delighted that the technology has been validated,” said Vidhu Nagpal, associate director, packaging R&D for Heinz. “Although we are in the very early stages of research, and many questions remain, we are excited about the possibilities this could produce for both Heinz and Ford, and the advancement of sustainable 100% plant-based plastics.”
If all goes well, tomato fibers could start being part of Ford cars within the next couple of years.
Thanks to Stephen Perry for the heads-up