Fruitleather Rotterdam believes that fruit has much to offer, especially imperfect or decaying fruit. It believes this neglected fruit, on average, provides more possibilities than we think. The Rotterdam-based company is developing a new, environmentally friendly manufacturing process that converts discarded fruit into sustainable, leather-like material.
Discarded fruit as a starting point
Worldwide, throwing away food is a big problem. Some 30% of the world’s agricultural land is used to produce 1.3 trillion tonnes of food that is not consumed. Of all the fruit that is produced for consumption, 45% gets thrown away. Confronted with fruit waste at the Rotterdam market, the people at Fruitleather Rotterdam throught they could make a difference. They arranged to pick up the fruit from market merchants and started developing a new eco-friendly process that converts leftover fruits into a durable leather-like material. These days they are collecting fruit from fruit importers throughout Holland, so they are assured of an abundant supply of diverse sorts of discarded fruit. In effect, they’re creating value to what was once considered to be a worthless product.
Fruitleather transforms the discarded fruit into sheets of leather-like material. In order to get a real leather look, a final finishing is applied. The Fruitleather can be coated or imprinted before being used for a wide variety of products which otherwise use traditional leather. The production process, which involves mashing, cooking and drying, is much cleaner than the traditional leather production. Using natural materials, Fruitleather is much less harmful to the environment and animals. Fruitleather Rotterdam is now developing the material further, making it strong enough to be used to make shoes, handbags and other products.
The Best Practices
Holland Circular Hotspot (HCH) wants to support international cooperation on the circular economy, with the aim of creating business opportunities and promoting the exchange of knowledge and innovation. In the magazine Circular Is Going Global - Join Holland's Flow you can read which circular best practices the Netherlands has to offer.