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Gilbert recycling company Footprint wins challenge to reinvent cups

(Twitter Photo/@LoopFund)

PHOENIX — Gilbert recycling company Footprint was recently named one of 12 winners in a challenge to reinvent disposable cups.

Nearly 500 companies from around the world participated in the the NextGen Cup Challenge and proposed ideas for reducing waste created by the cups.

Footprint, founded by former Intel engineers Troy Swope and Yoke Chung, created a line of recyclable and compostable cups, lids and straws.

“As a fully formed fiber-based solution, Footprint cups and lids bring a host of new innovations to the cup space that traditional manufacturing cannot match,” challenge sponsor OpenIDEO said in a press release.

“From variable wall thickness, to textures, to formed features that interlock with each other, Footprint cups and lids are changing the way cups work.”

The 12 winning teams will receive $1 million in funding, and up to six of them will be given the opportunity to join a business accelerator program.

The winning companies came from 10 different countries and proposed a variety of solutions, including reusable cup systems, compostable cup liners and new plant-based materials.

Footprint announced in fall 2018 that it was building a 135,000-square-foot paper straw manufacturing facility near Germann and Gilbert roads.

Swope told KTAR News 92.3 FM in September that Footprint has a goal of eliminating plastic straws, along with bowls and lids, and replacing them with paper products.

The company told Gilbert Digital that with four locations and about 600 employees, it plans to produce 27 million paper straws each day.

Manufacturing Month: Footprint

Have you heard? Footprint, headquartered in Gilbert, AZ, was selected as a winner of the NextGen Cup Challenge! 🎉They created a formed fiber cup, lid, and paper straw solution that is recyclable AND compostable. As a winner, they will receive ongoing support to scale up their models and prepare for production and distribution at a global scale… making a global difference! 🌏Learn more 👉 bit.ly/2EMyxgL

Posted by Gilbert Town Hall on Tuesday, March 5, 2019

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