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Carbon-Negative Foodware Now Available at Target

Image: Newlight Technologies Restore foodware
Plastic-free Restore foodware is dishwasher safe, requires no food crops for production, and reportedly is home compostable.

Restore, a sustainable foodware brand from Newlight Technologies Inc., continues to scale with its first national distribution partner, Target. The goal of Newlight Technologies is to replace traditional plastic with a “regenerative and plastic-free material" called AirCarbon. Restore’s AirCarbon straws and cutlery are now available in Target stores nationwide and on Target.com, said the Newlight announcement.

Manufactured in Huntington Beach, CA, AirCarbon straws and cutlery are dishwasher safe, never get soggy in hot or cold conditions, contain no plastic or glues, require no food crops for production, and are certified carbon-negative by SCS Global Services, reducing the net amount of carbon in the air through production. Since AirCarbon is a naturally-occurring material (also known as PHB), AirCarbon straws are certified home compostable and soil degradable.

In response to questions from PlasticsToday, Newlight explained that the company uses air, greenhouse gas, saltwater, and renewable energy to make its biomaterial. By mimicking a natural process that occurs in the ocean, Newlight’s production process sequesters or destroys more greenhouse gas than it emits. Newlight tapped SCS Global Services to conduct life-cycle assessments for Restore straws and cutlery to measure their carbon footprint, which was negative for each piece.

By making foodware out of AirCarbon, Restore is offering a new option for consumers who want straws and cutlery that are reusable and work as well as plastic but also have natural end-of-life pathways, said Newlight.

Since late 2020, Restore has been piloting AirCarbon straws and cutlery at locations across the United States. It recently announced a pilot program with Shake Shack in March 2021. Target is Restore’s introductory retail partner, marking the first time AirCarbon foodware is available for consumers to purchase.

“Our goal is to help end ocean plastic pollution by finding a shared middle ground,” said Mark Merrema, CEO of Newlight. “For us, that means making sustainable products that people love and that also work for the environment.”

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