After stepping down as CEO of regenerative beauty brand Ethique in early 2023, Brianne West is ready to start her new venture, tackling the problem of single-use plastic bottles.
The beverage market, which is worth $1.44 trillion globally, produces over 583 billion single-use plastic bottles each year.
West, the Founder of Ethique (which is now worth over $100 million), is aiming to prevent millions of these bottles going to waste every year through her ‘Incrediball’ concept.
“The beverage industry is a well-known contributor to the growing volumes of plastic waste entering our marine ecosystems and urban landscapes with a number of the largest players within the sector named as the most prolific plastic polluters in the world by environmental groups,” she says.
“When water is literally on tap in your kitchen, it seems crazy to ship it around the world.”
Incrediball is a concentrated effervescent drink mixer in the shape of a circular tablet that will dissolve in water.
Each product is equivalent to a 350ml beverage and can be added to alcoholic, non-alcoholic, hot and cold beverages to enhance the taste.
This will be the world’s very first effervescent drink tab in fully home-compostable packaging, with West saying this could prevent over 10 million single-use bottles from entering the waste stream every year from 2030.
“We are looking to transform the traditional model under which drinks are sold in their ready-made form by allowing consumers to purchase the flavouring component in a concentrated format that can be added to sparking, still, hot or cold tap water in a reusable container, as well as a wide range of other beverages,” adds West.
“We are aiming to offer consumers a delicious drink without the impact on the planet.”
The idea for Incrediball first came around when she recognised the shipment for drinks was “inherently inefficient” and contributed to a growing plastic pollution problem.
West adds that mainstream adoption of this product will be essential to making a meaningful environmental impact.
“With billions of plastic bottles manufactured every year, we know that our offering will need to have universal appeal to all segments of the market to have any chance at changing an entrenched set of consumption behaviours,” she says.
“To achieve this objective the primary focus will be on creating a product with an amazing taste profile that attracts consumers organically.”
She adds that they will making the product convenient to allow for people to also take on the go.
The Incrediball product will include a number of flavours such as Manuka, Kawakawa, Kiwifruit and more and will be both functional with health benefits and non-functional for everyday enjoyment.
West estimates the export potential to become a $30 million business within the next five years, with industry feedback currently being positive with a local supermarket being interested, set for their April 2024 launch.