Conversion of agricultural waste fibers into biodegradable food packaging

Problem statement

High prodution of banana, Cassava and other agricultural wastes.

Executive summary

Buying of banana wastes, Cassava wastes and other agricultural wastes from farmers to produce bioplastics for food packaging.

Technology description

Hya Bioplastics creates bio-based and 100% home compostable food packaging that provides a cost competitive alternative to petroleum-based plastics. They use Cassava starch and pulped fibers from banana pseudo stem as a key raw materials to make a range of food packaging including fruit and vegetable trays, takeaway food boxes and disposable plates. Hya Bioplastics are actively working on patenting this technology within Africa and licensing it as an additional revenue stream.
The business model is that they pay farmers for their undervalued banana pseudo-stem waste, providing them a valuable additional source of income. Moreover, they provide an alternative market for abundant commodities; Cassava is an undervalued, drought-resistant and widely grown crop in Africa. Cassava is a crop that is grown in 40 of the 53 African countries and it sells at half the price of alternative starches like cornstarch. They are offering additional markets for an abundant crop to prevent the losses farmers are currently making.

Market deployment considerations

High costs in relation to research & development.
Regulation and production certification. Moreover, availability of raw material could also be a handicap sometimes.

Environmental considerations

Sourcing of banana stem waste from farms to our processing centers. This would require setting up the processing centers as close to the waste as possible.
Large scale sourcing of high quality and consistent Cassava starch is a challenge.

Technology feedstock

banana leaves banana pseudo stems cassava starch corn stover potato peelings

Type of process


Technology output

biodegradable bags biodegradable food packaging


Community, manually powered scale. Community

Technology Readiness Level







Private sector

Technology owner/developer

Hya Bioplastics
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