Ford And Heinz Collaborate To Make Car Interiors Out Of Tomatoes

Ford And Heinz Collaborate To Make Car Interiors Out Of Tomatoes

The brands have teamed up to explore the possibility of making unused tomato parts from ketchup production into usable materials.

Leah Gonzalez
  • 12 june 2014

Ford Motor Company is collaborating with H.J. Heinz Company to explore the use of tomato fibers in developing sustainable bio-plastic materials that can be used in vehicle manufacturing.

The researchers at Ford and Heinz are specifically looking into the feasibility of using dried tomato skins to make wiring brackets or storage bins to be installed in Ford vehicles.

In a news release, Ellen Lee, Plastics Research Technical Specialist for Ford, stated,

We are exploring whether this food processing byproduct makes sense for an automotive application. Our goal is to develop a strong, lightweight material that meets our vehicle requirements, while at the same time reducing our overall environmental impact.

At Heinz, over two million tons of tomatoes are used annually to create Heinz Ketchup, the brand’s best-selling product. Researchers at the company are constantly looking for innovative ways to repurpose and recycle the stems, seeds, and peelings. Heinz leadership decided to work with Ford to explore more possibilities.

Vidhu Nagpal, Associate Director, Packaging R&D; for Heinz, stated,

We are delighted that the technology has been validated. Although we are in the very early stages of research, and many questions remain, we are excited about the possibilities this could produce for both Heinz and Ford, and the advancement of sustainable 100% plant-based plastics.

About a couple of years ago, Ford began collaborating with Heinz, and other companies like the Coca-Cola Company, Nike Inc. and Procter & Gamble for the Plant PET Technology Collaborative (PTC), which is described as “a strategic working group focused on accelerating the development and use of 100% plant-based PET materials and fiber in their products.” PET or polyethylene terephthalate is a durable and lightweight plastic that most companies use in their products and materials, including plastic bottles, footwear, clothing, and automotive fabric and carpet.

As part of its efforts to reduce its carbon footprint while developing more fuel-efficient technology for their vehicles, Ford has increased its use of recycled non-metal and bio-based materials, like cellulose fiber-reinforced console components, rice hull-filled electrical cowl brackets, recycled cotton material for carpeting and seat fabrics, and more.

Check out the infographic below, which depicts what Ford and Heinz are trying to do.



[h/t] Popular Science

Header Image: Ajith_chatie CC BY 2.0


IKEA Is Letting Kids Design Its New Line Of Toys

Travel Yesterday

30-Year-Old Photographs Used As Travel Guides

A new photo series revolves around tracing the origins of images from the past

Technology Yesterday

Album Turns Into Something New Each Time It’s Streamed

Bill Baird's new album explores the relationship between time and music through a website crafted by design team, One Pixel Wide


Get PSFK's Related Report: Future of Automotive

See All
Health Yesterday

VR App Prescribed For Pain Relief

A pharmacy chain in Sweden is stepping away from tradition to develop a happy place for the pain-afflicted

Retail Yesterday

Banks Are Coming Together To Create A New Payment Network That Rivals Venmo

A number of financial institutions are collaborating to make a new person-to-person monetary system called Zelle for their customers

Related Expert

Mona Hamouly

Social Media Marketing

Media & Publishing Yesterday

Pocket Camera Aims To Facilitate The Struggles Of Live Streams

The Mevo helps resolve the complexities of streaming video with an intuitive setup and smart editing controls

Food Yesterday

Startup Believes Traceability Will Help Disrupt The Multivitamin Industry

Ritual is a daily supplement for women that traces every ingredient back to its source

Food Yesterday

Photo Series Brutally Murders Some Of Your Favorite Fast Food

The portraits by artist duo Ilka & Franz do away with mealtime regulars in a way that is both beautiful and humorous


Future Of Automotive
Scenarios Driving The Digital Transformation Of An Industry

PSFK Op-Ed october 26, 2016

Health Expert: Nutritional Meal Replacements Are A Solution To Corporate Wellness

Ample Foods Founder Connor Young explains why supplements are the next food trend coming to the workplace

PSFK Labs october 25, 2016

The Keys For Exceptional Performance On And Off The Field

PSFK Labs' new report highlights five important insights for businesses to perform better than the competition

Mobile Yesterday

Coffeemaker Teaches You How To Make The Perfect Cup

The device comes with an accompanying app that guides novices and experts alike through the brewing process

Op-Ed Yesterday

General Electric: Lighting’s Impact On Sleep Is More Than The Off Switch

Jeff Patton, General Manager of Connected Home Products at GE Lighting, uncovers how lighting technologies can affect our sleep cycles

Brand Development Yesterday

The Story Behind How LYNK & CO Created A Car Brand From Scratch

Head of Design Andreas Nilsson describes which values were most influential in determining the identity and design direction of the new auto company

Travel Yesterday

Architect’s Design Presents A Radically New Approach For New York’s Penn Station

The firm of Vishaan Chakrabarti has envisioned a bright community and travel hub in the heart of the city

Fitness & Sport Yesterday

Editorial Roundtable: Building An All-Encompassing Performance Suite

WHOOP, ShotTracker, Rithmio, PlaySight, STYR Labs, EverybodyFights and Lift / Next Level Floats on the partnership opportunities available in health and fitness

Gaming & Play Yesterday

Fantasy Game Responds To Each Player’s Emotions

The card battling venture measures responses through a Bluetooth clip to adjust the experience accordingly

Luxury Yesterday

Carry A Map Of NYC On A Handbag

The bag from Bottega Veneta has been designed exclusively for Bergdorf Goodman to celebrate New York City

Technology Yesterday

Roaming Robots Crawl Around Your Body To Do Small Jobs As You Go About Your Day

A new concept wearable developed by researchers at MIT and Stanford are fully functional bots that live on your clothing

No search results found.