From Farm to Car

I like learning about new sustainability initiatives that can make a difference for the environment. This Ford Motor Company x Jose Cuervo collaboration totally caught my attention for it’s unique partnership. Ford has been working on turning food byproducts and food waste into environmentally-friendly vehicle parts to put in their cars. What the heck?! How can food be turned into car seats and cup holders? That’s what a whole research department at Ford is working on by figuring out how to alter chemicals and molecules to make food products into sustainable fabrics, containers and more that can be used inside their vehicles.

According to the United Nations Environment Programme, 5 billion metric tonnes of agricultural biomass waste is produced each year. The materials are abundant and often under utilised. Yet the materials can be relatively low cost, and can help manufacturers to offset the use of glass fibers and talc for more sustainable, lightweight products. The benefits of creating bio-based materials is that it will turn these food products into something useful again, reduce waste going into landfills, reduce dependence on petroleum-based products as well as creating lighter-weight materials that will make the vehicles more fuel-efficient.

As the most widely distributed tequila in the world, Jose Cuervo has to produce tons of agave plants to distill their signature liquor. What’s left after creating the tequila is lots of leftover agave fibres. Ford decided to see if the material could be used to create a composite bio-plastic that could be durable enough to use in their cars. If you still don’t quite understand how food material can become car parts, check out the video above for a quick tutorial on how the whole process works.

Food waste is a billion dollar worldwide issue that goes all the way up the food chain from farmers to producers to us regular ol’ consumers. It’s great to see two big brands working together to make a difference.


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