Ford and Heinz —cooperation on sustainable materials for vehicles


The developers came to the conclusion that the fiber of tomatoes can be used to create strong composite materials that could be used in the automotive industry. In particular, dried tomato peel could be used to create mounting brackets in Ford vehicles or for the production of containers in which the Ford drivers could be storing coins and other small objects. We explore the question of whether the use of such wastes from the food production to create parts, says Helen Lee, a specialist in the study of the properties of plastics at Ford. – Our goal is to create a strong and lightweight material, which meets the requirements of the vehicle manufacturer, at the same time reducing negative impact on the environment.

The company Heinz, which is engaged in the production of ketchup, was looking for innovative ways to recycle and utilize tomato skins, stems and seeds. Annually for the production of the product the company uses over two million tons of tomatoes, which remains after a lot of waste. Guide Heinz turned to Ford with a proposal of cooperation. We are pleased that the development of technology was finally approved, says Vidhu Nagpal, first Deputy Director for research in the field of packaging companies Heinz. And even though we are at very early stages of research, and before us still a lot of questions, we are very concerned about the opportunities we can open for companies Heinz and Ford, as well as possible future promotion of vegetable plastic.



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