The communication team sat down for an interview with Mr. Alessio Adamiano and Mr. Michele Iafisco, from Recover Ingredients, Eloquence Prize winner of the international Blue Business Plan Competition organized by MISTRAL!
What were your expectations from participating in the MISTRAL Blue Business Plan Competition?
We knew that there was a lot of projects, of interesting start-ups and of highly skilled and enthusiastic people that deserved to pass the national competition and get to the international final in Toulon, so we felt like we had the responsibility to do our best because we knew that the competition was going to be very strong.
What are your impressions from the national competition and the relevant workshops? How did they help further develop your idea?
The competition was hard! As I said, there were a lot of projects, passion, brilliant people that would have deserved the possibility to present their project at the final. Regarding the workshops and the tutoring, we have to thank all the tutors and the organizers for the amazing job they did. They were all of big help to us, none excluded!
Can you tell us few words about your business idea? Ηow is it related to the main pillars of blue growth?
We research, develop and produce natural cosmetic and agricultural ingredients from the circular economy of marine biomasses, able to replace those ingredients flagged over health and environmental concerns. Our approach has a two-fold link to the blue growth. In the first place, we have developed a process to valorize the inorganic component of fishery by-products (mainly fish bones and mussel shells). But it’s not over! Because the materials or ingredients we produce can replace those potentially dangerous for the healt of customers, but also for the environment, especially the marine environment. Just think to the problem of UV-filters of microplastic in water. These chemicals are very harmful for a variety of marine ecosystems like coral reef, and can also bio-accumulate along the trophic chain to get back to us as food.
What are your next steps in implementing your idea?
We are now negotiating a deal with a big chemical company. Hopefully we will soon find an agreement so to start the set-up of our first pilot plant! Then, we will do our best to optimize the production and start to sell our ingredients.
You were awarded the Eloquence award; how do you feel about that?
It was an honor for us to get this award. The competition was very strong, so we were flattered to have such a recognition. As a team, we spend a lot of time on curating our pitch. We did a huge number of pitches in the last two years, and we learned the importance of communicating our project in a simple but appealing way, so to engage both experts and the general audience. Being scientific researchers, it is natural for us to be more excited about the technical part, and although this is important it is not enough! Because in 5 minutes we have to show not only that the project is sound, but also that the problem we want to solve is urgent and that our idea is effective and has good market potential.