Products made from plastic from the Great Pacific Garbage Patch

Dutch non-profit organisation The Ocean Cleanup brought its first batch of ocean plastic to shore from the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, announcing it will be transformed into products.

The Ocean Cleanup was founded with the intention to clean up the Great Pacific Garbage Patch with a passive plastic collection system (read more about it here). The company faced several setbacks in which it turned out the system wasn’t working properly. The first deployed system, in September 2018, didn’t retain plastic as it should and suffered fatigue fracture. It was called to shore in January 2019.

After several months of trailing modifications, The Ocean Cleanup deployed an upgraded system. In October 2019, the start-up announced that the new system was capturing and collecting plastic debris, from ghost nets to microplastics as small as one millimetre in size.

Now, the system has returned with its first load of ocean plastic, which will be used to make products. If all goes well, the organization expects to launch this premier product made from material collected in the Great Pacific Garbage Patch in September 2020. Details of the product, pricing, and quantity are also set to be announced at this time. All of the products’ proceeds will be reinvested to fund the Ocean Cleanup’s operations.

Currently, products labelled as ocean plastic may not be entirely sourced from the ocean. The Ocean Cleanup’s products will be verified by DNV GL, which has been developing a standard certification for ocean plastic.

With the conclusion of the first mission, the company has begun preparations for their next system, which is aimed to be a full-scale, fully operational system.