Plastic water bottles remain an unshakable scourge because of the trash they generate, but student designers from Spain want to kick them to the curb permanently. They’ve created a blobby alternative, where the medium is the membrane.
The blob design, called “Ooho,” encapsulates water in a double gelatinous membrane made from brown algae and calcium chloride. Spanish design students Rodrigo García González, Guillaume Couche and Pierre Paslier say their water bottle alternative is simple, cheap, durable, hygienic, biodegradable and even edible. Hat tips to Inhabitat and Co.Exist.
By cheap, they mean each one costs two cents to make — and is simple enough to create at home. The designers say that this kind of “spherification” dates back to 1946, and has been used more recently in modern cuisine. As Co.Exist’s Adele Peters pointed out, a similar concept for food delivery called WikiPearl is available commercially.
One downside is that you have to pierce the Ooho to drink, and that can be messy. Plus it’d be hard to keep them clean for everyday use. However, they could be perfect for running events, where race organizers struggle with waste. I remember one 10K gave participants reusable clip-on water pouches, but runners mostly grabbed paper cups anyway.
Runners crave speedy delivery — think electrolyte goo — so these edible blobs might help with that, as long as long as discarded ones don’t inadvertently create intensely slippery conditions. Then it would be Ooho no.
Photo: The edible “Ooho” blob encapsulates water in a gelatinous membrane. Credit: Rodrigo García González, and Guillaume Couche and Pierre Paslier via Designboom.