Y Science highlighted innovative forest industry startups at Slush
The Finnish Forest Industries Federation attended Y Science, one of the side events of Slush. The Forest & Environment section of the event featured inspiring presentations from Innomost. and LignoSphere, two companies using wood as raw material.
Innomost. - From birch wood to cosmetics
Innomost processes birch wood and forest industry side streams into ingredients for cosmetic products. The company was founded with an ecological mindset focusing on sustainable development.
“Our dream is to achieve a positive environmental impact,” says Aino Erkinjuntti, Sales & Marketing Director at Innomost.
The dream is made possible by offering a more sustainable alternative for materials such as microplastics, beeswax and palm oil. The diverse product selection of Innomost includes natural materials extracted from birch: birch bark powder, birch charcoal powder, betulin, suberin and azelaic acid.
Innomost is rapidly expanding its operations. The company’s pilot production facility, expected to employ 25 people, will be completed in Kokkola at the end of the year.
LignoSphere - From science to product
Doctor Nina Forsman, CEO of LignoSphere, has always been fascinated by the natural sciences. This fascination inspired her to study bioproduct technology at Aalto University, completing a doctoral degree. In her studies, Nina learned about lignin; nature’s own binding agent that can be extracted from wood as a by-product of the pulp industry, for example.
Nina became intrigued by the wide range of applications offered by this complex, plant-based polymer. In lignin, Nina saw such untapped potential that she took a brave step from working as a researcher to founding a company together with four colleagues.
The company, named LignoSphere, uses lignin for a cost-effective production of various types of glues and adhesives, water-resistant coatings and other products. The operations of LignoSphere are based on a production method developed by Aalto University where fossil raw materials are replaced by lignin which is processed into spherical particles that can be moulded for various uses.
“Science can change the world, but putting research into practice requires tangible measures,” says Nina Forsman, founding member of LignoSphere. “I enjoy working in a field where we get to create new solutions.”
Finnish Forest Industries Federation encourages innovation
Finnish forest industry companies are world leaders in the development of innovations based on renewable materials technology. Research, development and innovation support the creation of new forest industry products and business opportunities.
“I’m very pleased and inspired to see the solution-oriented and creative approach of startup companies to the use of renewable, biodegradable and recyclable materials. The ability of young companies to grasp the opportunities of a market-driven world with an innovative attitude gives me hope and encouragement. Only by accessing the market can we achieve sustainable economic growth and the positive environmental impact realised by customers,” says Director Maarit Lindström from the Finnish Forest Industries Federation.