TUHH doctoral students Joana Gil and Wienke Reynolds are producing 100 per cent bio-based plastics based on lignin, which can be used, for example, as UV protection, antioxidants, fat binders and fillers, thus replacing the microplastics often found in cosmetic products. Fossil and harmful substances are thus avoided and the range of sustainable products is increased.
Lignin is produced as a by-product in the paper and pulp industry as well as in biorefineries and has so far - despite its valuable properties - been incinerated. Lignin is one of the main components of woody plants. It gives them shape and stability. The start-up company Lignopure has developed a patented technology with which the by-product can be processed for use in cosmetic products.
The scientists are supported in their research work by TUHH professor Irina Smirnova, head of the Institute for Thermal Process Engineering. Together with TUHH, Lignopure holds several patents on the production and drying process of lignin. Startup Port @TUHH has supported the team since 2018 as part of beyourpilot. IFB Hamburg, together with its subsidiary IFB Innovationsstarter GmbH, has supported Lignopure through the InnoRampUp programme and the Innovationsstarter Fonds, among other things with grants.
In the month of May 2023, the startup was able to announce two important distribution partnerships:
Distribution partnership with G&C Kreglinger
Lignopure announced on 9 May its new distribution partnership with G&C Kreglinger, a Belgian company with more than two hundred years of tradition and experience in the distribution of special ingredients for the food and beverage, cosmetics and personal care, pharmaceutical and industrial sectors.
The partnership aims to leverage the strengths of both companies to create a seamless customer experience and offer Lignopure's new cosmetics line LignoBase to personal care brands and formulators in Germany, Austria, Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxembourg and the UK. This will allow Lignopure to expand its offering and provide even more value and convenience to cosmetic customers.
"We are convinced that Lignopure's expertise in innovative lignin-based cosmetic materials combined with Kreglinger's experience and tradition in sales and marketing will result in a high-quality service with a truly unique product in the personal care and cosmetics market," the startup said in early May.
Distribution partnership with ECKART GmbH
On 15 May, Lignopure announced a new distribution partnership with ECKART GmbH. Founded in 1876, the German company is a global leader in pigments and colour management for industrial and cosmetic applications. This makes it a very strong ally in exploring the various opportunities that Lignopure's newly launched cosmetic ingredient line LignoBase can offer the personal care industry.
The start-up company hopes this partnership will have a major impact on sales and formulation development. It will also enable the researchers to provide optimal service to cosmetic formulators, brands and manufacturers looking to test, reformulate and develop new formulations with multifunctional recycled ingredients like their LignoBases. ECAKRT is present in numerous countries in Europe, the Middle East, Asia-Pacific, North, Central and South America, including France, Italy, Turkey, Sweden, USA, Canada, Mexico, Brazil, Morocco, South Africa, Australia, China, India, Thailand and Japan.
Both parties believe that this partnership perfectly combines Lignopure's expertise in lignin-based ingredients and ECKART's experience in customer support and formulation development.
The new multifunctional lignin-based product line, LignoBase, was launched during in-cosmetics global 2023, held in Barcelona in March 2023, and is available for interested companies to try out natural upcycled ingredients with multifunctional properties for future developments in sun care, skin care and colour cosmetics.
More information about the LignoBase line: https://www.lignopure.com/lignobase/