Examensarbete

Reusability of disposable food containers

Company

The startup company ConServ produces disposable tableware and take away-containers made of palm leaves. The company saw an opportunity to challenge the market by using organic materials without chemicals or other added components Their products are made of palm leaves that is formed under high pressure and heat, making the material decompose in a much slower pace.

After a couple of years of product design and preparation the company was founded in spring of 2022. ConServ is a family-owned company with base in Malmö and production in India, where the leaves are picked and pressed into the final product.

Task

Even though ConServ’s products are for disposable use, the company would want their table ware and food containers to be used as many times as possible before discarding them. But since palm leaves are biodegradable by nature and only treated to slow down the process, the products will eventually become useless for it’s intended purpose. This is a fact even for plastic or paper disposable products, but the time amount of times of uses before the product should be discarded varies from material to material. The question is - How does ConServ’s palm leaf-products stand against other disposable products?

This project aims to investigate the reusability of different kinds of disposable tableware or take away containers to see if they could be considered as reusable rather than disposable. How many usages do products of for example carton, plastic, palm leaf or other organic materials have before they are useless? Could producers and resellers recommend their customers to prolong the lifespan of the products by re-using them and thereby lower the overall environmental impact of each use from a life cycle perspective? Does the products sustain in quality over more usages? Are there any reasons to maintain the one-time use principal from a quality, health or sturdiness-perspective? Are there any legislation obstructing companies to recommend reuse of disposable products?

If time allows the project also aim to study microbial growth on the material when containing food in different temperature conditions such as in a refrigerator, freezer and in room temperature.

The project should be based on relevant academic literature as well as collection of empirical evidence based on your own experiments. Final scope and limitations of the project are decided in consultation with the contact person at the company and the supervisor at the university.

Uppdragsgivare ConServ
Förkunskaper Du läser en teknisk utbildning med goda kunskaper om material.
Omfattning Projektet görs som ett examensarbete på kandidat eller masternivå.
Plats Malmö
Kontaktperson

Helena Ensegård
helena@sustainalink.se
0706-353925

Övrig information

Språket som används i företaget är engelska och därför förväntas även slutrapporten för det här examensarbetet vara skriven på engelska.