SodaStream has deployed a massive ocean-cleaning device called the “Holy Turtle” to clean plastic waste from the ocean off Honduras.

Modelled after oil spill containment systems, the Turtle is a 1000-foot (304.8-metre) unit towed between two marine vessels, which collects plastic waste on the surface while its large vent holes ensure the safety of wildlife.

It was piloted in the Caribbean Sea off Roatán, Honduras, as part of a four-day ocean cleanup expedition led by Daniel Birnbaum, CEO of Sodastream. The operation was inspired by a 2017 video, featured on BBC, of underwater photography documenting a floating garbage patch near Roatán.

According to Birnbaum, this video moved him to find a solution. “We can’t clean up all the plastic waste on the planet, but we each need to do whatever we can,” he said. “The most important thing is to commit ourselves to stop using single-use plastic.”

The clean-up crew included 150 SodaStream executives from 45 countries, environmental specialists, the NGO Plastic Soup Foundation, and children from seven local schools. The waste collected will be used in an exhibition aimed at raising awareness of the problems caused by single-use plastics, including cups, straws, bags and bottles.

“More than eight million tons of plastic goes into the ocean every year. This plastic doesn't disappear. It breaks up into tiny particles, floats in the ocean, endangers marine life and ends up in our food chain,” said Birnbaum. “We must all put our hands together to reduce the use of single-use plastic and commit ourselves to changing our habits and go reusable. It’s in our hands.”

Food & Drink Business

Queensland’s Food Technology and Manufacturing Exhibition returns to Brisbane this month! The triennial FoodTech Qld expo is on 28-30 July 2019 (Sunday to Tuesday) at the Brisbane Convention & Exhibition Centre. This year’s theme is “Creating new lines in manufacturing” and aims to deliver nothing less.

Findings from a study of more than 100,000 people over nine years suggests that reducing sugary drinks may reduce cancer risk.

Drought-tolerant grape varieties from Cyprus will soon be trialled for suitability in Australian conditions, with researchers from the University of Adelaide hoping the vines will be able to grow “with minimal to no irrigation”.