Natural WAX of Arctic Berries as Our Treasure

Vastuullinen yksikkö


Hankkeen kesto

01.12.2016 - 30.11.2019

Hankkeen kotisivu 



In this project methods are developed for exploiting the raw material still present in the side stream and thus increasing its value. The particularly interesting issue is that the berries of these plants are covered with natural wax, which is currently wasted during the industrial refinement process. The wax extracted from industry side streams, waste or freshly picked berries could prove to be very valuable natural resource provided it can be economically extracted and refined.

The aim of the project is to develop methods to utilize both the wild berry waxes as well as waxes derived from the side streams of the wild berry industry and for the production of high-value wax extract that could be used for various industrial, wellbeing, cosmetic or biomedical applications that already show potential and interest of using this resource.

Hankkeen toteutus

The industrial demand for wax is about 1.000.000 tons annually from which about only 3% is covered by natural waxes and 97% (mainly as paraffin) is produced from non-renewable (mainly fossil) sources. Compared to synthetic waxes which are fossil (oil) based and chemically processed materials, the natural waxes are produced by biogenesis, renewable and thus contribute to sustainable processes and reduced carbon emission. Due to exceptional properties these natural waxes are widely used in food, cosmetic, household, packaging and pharmaceutical products

Recent market research of the potential of arctic berry wax in cosmetics in Finland (Paso 2016) shows the growing consumer trend of natural cosmetics. The berry processors interviewed (SMEs) are interested in providing raw material extracted from the side stream of production at a competitive price, and the cosmetic industry (mainly SMEs) is interested in the new potential berry-based raw material with potentially unique properties. Compared to other natural waxes, for example bee wax, berry wax is vegan. New berry-based raw material would enable the cosmetic companies to launch new value-added products, and strengthen their competitive advantage in domestic and also in export markets. In Laura Paso's study (OUAS's thesis) all the relevant actors operating at the front end of the value chain as well as companies which manufacture, market and sell natural cosmetics were very interested in this new berry wax, which would enable them to develop new products, business models and value propositions, as they had failed themselves to identify and utilize this business opportunity earlier. The natural cosmetics industry offers marketing opportunities for the new natural wax. Consumers appreciate clean Nordic raw materials. The arctic berry wax could also be a part of the operations which could raise the degree of berry processing: its commercial potential depends on the expenses of the method used to extract wax from berries. With the resources and the research of the arctic berry material, extraction process, applications, and business development operations of this project, SMEs will gain access to this knowledge which will enable them to grow their business domestically and internationally.


The WAX project will contribute to enhancing bio-economy and circular economy, which are seen as globally important development trends, as we will be exploring the potential of exploiting the side streams of the Nordic berry-based industry. New high-end and high value products developed from arctic berries may have interesting market potential both domestically in Nordic countries and in the EU as well as globally, especially in Asia.

Yhteyshenkilön sähköpostiosoite

Tämä sähköpostiosoite on suojattu spamboteilta. Tarvitset JavaScript-tuen nähdäksesi sen.
Tietolähde: Thinking Portfolio