Solon: the solution to single-use plastics


Singapore-based biotech start-up RWDC Industries Ltd, the winner of The Liveability Challenge 2018, presented by Temasek Foundation, launched its Solon brand at Ecosperity Week 2019 in Singapore, 4-7 June.

nSolon is an ideal material for replacing petrol-based single-use plastic articles, including cutlery, cups, bags, plates, and bowls. Solon is being introduced in Singapore as a drinking straw product first.

Solon drinking straws were available at Ecosperity Week 2019 at the RDWC/Solon booth, next to the Bettr Barista coffee stand. The straws were also available from a number of leading food and beverage partners in Singapore, who supported the launch.

Solon is a type of PHA (or polyhydroxylalkanoate) – a biopolymer naturally produced and optimised by RWDC Industries to enable a global solution to today’s plastic waste management challenge.

Since winning The Liveability Challenge 2018, RWDC has had an exciting year, which included not only some highly promising product trials in a number of applications with its clients and this exciting product launch, but also US$22 million of new funding in April and its first US-based institutional investor.

“We believe that it is our duty as stewards of the planet to use our talents, energy and time to leave a legacy of a sustainable future,” said Dr Daniel Carraway, RWDC’s Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer.

“There are a number of ‘compostable’ single-use plastic alternatives on the market; however, these materials can only be composted in well managed, commercial composting facilities that are equipped to operate with precise control systems,” he added.

“We would like to congratulate RWDC for the successful launch of its first PHA product within a short span after winning The Liveability Challenge in 2018. Temasek Foundation champions liveability and sustainability, and hopes to reduce the damaging impact from plastic waste. We look forward to RWDC developing and commercialising many more Solon products. This will benefit end-users who will be able to make ecologically responsible choices, and collectively make a big difference to our living environment,” said Mr Lim Hock Chuan, Chief Executive of Temasek Foundation Ecosperity.

Governments around the world are beginning to legislate aggressively on plastic waste. RWDC supports the initiatives of ‘Reduce, Reuse and Recycle’ but notes these steps are not enough to alter the growth trajectory of plastic waste, risking serious consequences. RWDC believes a better solution is to ‘replace’ single-use plastics with the right material, PHA - an unmodified, naturally occurring polymer that offers many of the benefits, versatility and functionality of petroleum plastic materials, while enabling a safe outcome in all potential post-consumer end of life scenarios.

Solon is certified by European certification authority TÜV Austria to safely biodegrade in natural environments, leaving absolutely no harmful remains or by-products. It is made from sustainably produced, renewable feedstock, is incredibly versatile, and available at a commercially viable price.

RWDC Industries is a privately held company that was founded in 2015 by Mr Roland Wee and Dr Daniel Carraway. It has a strategic alliance with the New Materials Institute at The University of Georgia, the oldest public university in the United States. The company's mission is to replace single-use plastics with safe, sustainable materials.