Company recycling coffee into biofuel wins Innovation pitching event

The 3rd Food & FMCG Innovation Pitching Event, held on 19 November at Food Matters Live in London, saw some very innovative ideas presented, including sugar alternatives, algae-based products and new packaging solutions.


18 innovators pitched their ideas to members of the Open Innovation (OI) Forum – a group of senior leaders from major Food & FMCG firms, such as Mars, Unilever, General Mills, Tate & Lyle, Tesco and Crown Packaging interested in OI.


The winner was Biobean, a London-based green energy company that transforms waste coffee grounds into two carbon-neutral biofuel products – biomass pellets and biodiesel.


Citrox Biosciences, which has developed an antibacterial, antiviral and antifungal agent derived from bitter orange, was a very close second and was also Highly Commended. The invention can be used to decontaminate food or create an antibacterial coating on packaging materials.


The other Highly Commended participants were:

  • Dovetailed, a Cambridge-based design studio and innovation lab which has developed a novel 3D printing technique that creates personalised fruit-like food on demand;
  • UWI Technology, which has developed a ‘smart label’ that displays the time left to consume a product by changing colour;
  • Aragreen, a company which has developed novel photobioreactor technology for the low-cost production of algae biomass at industrial volumes.


The award ceremony was held at the Tesco Food Academy stand with OI Forum member Richard Stride, Tesco’s Head of Product Research and Academy, handing out the trophies. The event was hosted by Jim Trueman, Principal Industrial Fellow at IfM Education and Consultancy Services.



Clockwise from top left: Citrox Bio; Dovetailed; UWI Technology; Aragreen.


The University of Cambridge Open Innovation Forum was set up in 2010 by IfM Education and Consultancy Services (IfM ECS), the dissemination arm of the University of Cambridge Institute for Manufacturing, to provide support and opportunities for companies involved in the Food and FMCG value chain.


To learn more about the OI Forum click here.


If you are interested in hearing about future events sign up here.

Date published

15 December 2014

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