Innovative green design studio is doing its part to fight deforestation by making lamp shades from carrot peels, tables from grass.
ISTANBUL (TR) - Today, the global community marks World Environment Day, which is dedicated to raising awareness about the need to protect our beleaguered environment. Turkey’s Ottan Studio is using the occasion to reiterate its commitment to sustainability.
With the motto “Don’t produce waste, consume it!”, Ottan Studio has made a name for itself converting food waste into bio-composite material from which it makes furniture, decorative items and wall paneling. “We use organic materials – mowed grass, fruit pulp, expired legumes – to make our products,” Ottan Studio founder Ayşe Yılmaz says. “We are now making high-quality lampshades out of orange pulp and carrot peels.”
According to Yılmaz, waste materials are collected from companies and municipalities throughout Turkey. These are then converted into raw materials with which Ottan Studio manufactures its products. “This organic raw material can be used to make furniture and decorative items,” she says. “It can even be used in construction projects, and in the automotive and home-appliance sectors.”
Bringing an aesthetic perspective to the notion of recycling, Ottan Studio strives to make a difference, both environmentally and economically, by recycling what is referred to as “green waste.” The studio’s unique design concept aims to reduce waste by creating high-quality, long-lasting products from these all-natural materials.
Ottan Studio’s highly functional product line, which utilizes natural resources instead of wasting them, will soon be available for purchase online from anywhere in the world.
“There is a misconception that wood is the greenest solution in the furniture and construction sectors,” Yılmaz says. “But the equivalent of 40 football fields of woodland is destroyed every minute due to the intensive timber consumption that these industries require.”
“Meanwhile, roughly one third of the food produced worldwide goes to waste,” she explains. “But all this can be recycled for use in a range of manufacturing sectors.”
Stressing the importance of Ottan Studio’s zero-waste approach, Yılmaz adds: “A tree takes about 30 years to grow, but its leaves and fruit grow anew every year. We perceived this as an opportunity, and developed a more sustainable approach to manufacturing.”
“It is predicted that all our forests will disappear within the next 100 years, but we can prevent this,” Yılmaz asserts optimistically, going on to explain how Ottan Studio plants a new tree sapling for every product it sells.
“So instead of cutting a tree down, we convert its leaves into useable material, while at the same time planting 70 new saplings,” she says. “If one in four trees were processed this way instead of being cut down for timber, we could reverse deforestation within ten years and make our world a much greener place."
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