In October 2020, we launched our first product made with plastic from the Great Pacific Garbage Patch: The Ocean Cleanup Sunglasses. These sold out in February 2022. With this proof of concept, we were able to show that it was possible to make high-quality products from our catch. We want to ensure that the collected plastic continues to be seen as a material with value. By recycling the collected plastic into durable products, we help fund the continued cleanup. We also want to ensure that we have a plan to keep the products out of the environment when they reach their end of life.
We have decided not to be a plastic supplier, but rather we will use the collected plastic as part of a larger-scale partnership with companies who can use it in their products. Our Global Partnership with Kia is a good example. Through this multi-year agreement, Kia will provide funds and in-kind contributions. In addition, their experience in product design, development, manufacturing, and go-to-market strategies will help to create a resource circulation system by integrating part of our catch into their production and value chain process. The end products will be durable to avoid harvested plastics ending up back in the environment. To ensure maximum impact, as our plastic supply is small in comparison to the plastic industry, we take this selective approach with our catch.
To learn more, visit our Waste Management and Recycling page, and reach out to us via our contact form, to discuss collaboration opportunities.