Chelsea Fawn Briganti, who also aptly goes by the name “Sea” Fawn Briganti, is the co-founder and CEO of Loliware — the world’s leading seaweed-based material technology company in the fight to replace single-use plastics with products designed to disappear.
Briganti leads an interdisciplinary group of material scientists, food technologists, seaweed biologists, engineers, chemists, industrial designers, and futurologists combining aspects of material science, food technology, and seaweed biology. The first product they have created is LOLIWARE’s Straw of the Future — seaweed-based, biodegradable straws.
The LOLIWARE straw looks, feels and acts like plastic, but is made from 100% plant-based food-grade materials and is designed to disappear either through composting or natural processes. With a feel similar to plastic straws, the LOLIWARE Straw introduces an environmentally friendly solution to the global plastics problem without compromising the user experience or requiring a shift in consumer behaviour. Unlike paper-based plastic-straw replacements, the LOLIWARE Straw can withstand over 18 hours of continuous use.
“The Straws are just the beginning,” says Briganti.
Briganti and her team hail seaweed as a highly renewable and regenerative resource that delivers a more sustainable and durable product that can withstand 18+ hours of continuous use that starts to fully degrade once composted.
One of the fastest-growing plants in the world, kelp offers quick access to a regenerative raw material that provides a wide array of ecosystem services including carbon sequestration.
As a fast-growth ocean-tech business harnessing the power of “seaweed intelligence,” LOLIWARE is hoping to inspire foodservice businesses, corporations, and governments to make the switch to products which support the blue carbon economy – products that Briganti believes are “simply better than anything out there, better for the environment, better for the ocean and better for humans without necessitating changes to existing behaviour.”
Now that LOLIWARE has launched its line of straws, over the coming years, they’re focused on an array of new and exciting innovations, including new straw, cup, and utensil lines.
In January 2020, LOLIWARE announced the close of a $6MM financing round, led by prominent NY venture firm Hatzimemos / Libby. LOLIWARE will use the proceeds to meet global demand from Fortune 500 companies, scaling its first straws into the billions in 2020.
“The status quo – that single-use products should be ‘built to last’ – is destroying our planet. Seaweed is a miracle replacement waiting for us,” says Briganti. “All across our blue planet, there is an incredible collection of massive aquatic forests, in some cases dwarfing land-based resources. They efficiently capture CO2, forming tremendous carbon sinks while growing up to three meters per day depending on the species, which is why a seaweed-based product has an environmental advantage vs. petroleum, corn, or tree-based products.”
Prior to starting LOLIWARE, Briganti contributed to breakthrough innovation teams for brands such as Coke, Pepsi, and Nestle focused on industrial design and engineering, sustainable innovation, and smart materials.Tags: algae, bioplastic, kelp, seaweed