Gousto edible packaging

Gousto is claiming a world first with a new edible packaging solution, as part of ongoing efforts to reduce plastic in its recipe boxes.

After 15 years of research and one year of development, the stock cube wrapper is said to be the world’s first edible packaging to be made from pea protein. Created in partnership with Xampla, a mission-based spinout from the University of Cambridge, the stock cube will be trialled in Gousto recipe boxes this month.

The edible packaging is made by engineering and drying a pea protein material into sheets that have the same benefits as plastic, being able to preserve the food’s flavour and shelf life, but with none of the packaging waste. The material is also vegan and gluten free.

Home cooks who take part in the trial will receive the vegetable stock cube in Gousto’s Indian Spiced Carrot & Lentil Soup recipe, by simply dissolving the stock cube and its packaging in hot water.

B Corp status

Following its first full year of profitability in 2020, the recipe box company recently became a certified B Corporation, joining a global community of businesses that are committed to growing the right way for people and the planet, including Xampla.

This was achieved in part by Gousto’s ongoing work to reduce plastic packaging in its recipe boxes. Last year the business cut plastic by 50 per cent in its boxes by switching to more cardboard packaging and launching the Eco Chill Box, an insulator made of recycled cardboard that keeps ingredients fresh in boxes.

Gousto said a further 17 tonnes of plastic could be saved annually if the new edible stock cube packaging is rolled out in full to customers in the future.

Gousto chief executive and founder Timo Boldt said: “At Gousto, our purpose is to build products that have a positive impact on people and the planet and we invest in innovations that will help us get there. We are so proud of our Eco Chill Box and the significant amount of plastic we cut from our boxes as a result. This partnership with Xampla is another super exciting step towards reducing plastic packaging even further.

'We’re excited to see what our customers think, and to continue paving the way for innovative sustainable solutions in our industry.”