There’s no shortage of ambition when it comes to trying to recycle plastics, yet less than 10% are actually recycled.
A Victorian envirotech startup, Phantm, which has just raised $2 million in Seed funding, is hoping to change that by helping companies understand and reduce their plastic footprint, by using alternatives.
The round was led by Black Nova, Salus Ventures and CoVentures.
Elliot Costello, cofounder and CEO of the plastic reduction platform, said Phantm is already working with a range of leading international and Australian businesses, including MECCA, Starbucks Australia and Norwood Industries.
Phantm offers an independent pathway for businesses seeking to reduce their plastic footprint through making informed packaging and product decisions. Its methodology, known as A-R-T (Assess, Reduce, Transition), assists firms in reducing costs and tracking their progress towards becoming plastic-free.
Costellos said that recycling alone cannot solve the plastic crisis, and it.
“The market has been demanding alternatives, and it’s time to embrace the range of different materials that can replace petrochemical plastics so that we can finally turn virgin plastic off at the tap,” he said.
“The enthusiasm from investors across the country is really exciting and shows the dedication to deplastifying Australian businesses.”
Globally, only 9% of plastics are recycled, with contamination and mixed plastics often hampering efforts. The plastics industry is worth US$600 billion, and some estimates suggest consumption could nearly double by 2050 with changes to current demand.
Plastics expert and Phantm head of strategy Edward Whitehead said they help brands navigate the complex layers involved in plastic reduction.
“We bring the expertise that helps firms pull back the layers, ensuring they’re taking the right steps towards positive change,” he said.
“Businesses can’t just leapfrog into perfection, and it’s important they work transparently to improve, be better and do better”.
Phantm‘s now looking to expand across Asia, North America, and Europe, focussing on regions with significant plastic consumption and limited recycling infrastructure.