Why use a water bottle and harm the environment when you could drink from Ooho, a biodegradable and edible water balloon-like blob?
Every year, there are 2.4 million tons of plastic waste, and 50% of that comes from plastic water bottles alone. This is the problem Ooho is trying to address, and if it one day gets mass produced, it could do leaps and bounds when it comes to reducing plastic waste.
“The reality is that every day more, when we drink water we throw away a plastic bottle,” said Rodrigo Garcia-Gonzalez, one of three London-based industrial design students behind the project, in an interview. “This act of consumerism reflects the society in which we live. Ooho proposes an alternative.”
Source: Youtube, Neopress
The water is contained in two layers of membrane synthesized from brown algae and calcium chloride. To drink from it, all you need to do is puncture the casting, then drink. You can either eat the membrane or throw it away, similar to an apple’s skin.
It’s obviously not as sturdy as a water bottle, but Garcia-Gonzalez suggests that a smaller collection of Oohos could be stored in a bigger one with a thicker membrane to prevent unwanted spills and making it easier to sip from (you also don‘t have to drink all of the water in one go). Also, since it was two membranes, it remains hygienic, as you can peel from the first layer and drink from the second one.
The container/membrane patented under a Creative Commons license, meaning anyone can get and copy the design without needing to pay the creators of it. This encourages innovation and so that anyone with the right materials could make their own at home.
Source: Wordless Tech
Ooho’s design was inspired by similar membranes found in nature, particularly egg yolks. Ooho is made using the process of spherification, a technique that can shape liquids into sphere and dates back as far as the 1940s. To keep the final product as large as possible during this stage and to keep each membrane separate from each other, the water is frozen during this process.
Other similar methods have been done in the food industry as well. WikiPearl is a product sold in only 4 Whole Foods markets in Massachusetts, it is spherical in shape and can contain anything from ice cream to bite-sized parcels. Chefs such as Ferràn Adria and Heston Blumenthal, have also used a controversial method of cooking called Molecular gastronomy, in which they experiment with the physical and chemical capabilities of ingredients to create an edible storage for food.