Taking the leap: How innovations shape a more sustainable future

Sustainability affects us all and sustainable development is something no one can ignore – it has become the main driver of innovation nowadays. In this article, our CEO Veijo Hytti shares his view on sustainable transformation and explains the term “bioloikka” – “bio jump”.

Transition at different levels

Digital transformation is on everyone’s lips these days, “digitisation” a huge buzzword. Especially the Covid 19 pandemic has forced most companies to do things digitally. In Finland, we talk about “digiloikka” – digital jump.

But not only have digitalisation initiatives been greatly accelerated recently, but also sustainability has become a central theme in most companies’ transformation strategy. Some companies even focus their innovation efforts exclusively on sustainability; for example, the Finnish fibre innovation company Spinnova. The company produces fabric from wood fibres, thereby not only challenging the status quo but taking a leap in sustainability – a “bio jump”.

A relief for the environment

Cotton is the most popular fibre in the world today, but its production comes at a serious cost for our environment. Cotton is a very vulnerable plant, which is why a lot of pesticides are used in its cultivation, and on top of that, cotton plantations swallow up huge amounts of water. For example, the cultivation of cotton in Uzbekistan has led to the complete drying up of the Aral Lake. To better protect the environment and conserve our limited resources, we need to think innovatively and develop sustainable alternatives.

Inspired by how spiders spin their webs from cellulose, Spinnova has developed a technique to produce textiles from pulp. The whole process works without the use of chemicals and with minimal water consumption and CO2 emissions. Plus, the materials needed are produced by the ton in Finland: Traditionally, forestry has always played a major role in Finland and the country is one of the largest producers of pulp these days. More than half of the country is covered by forests, and, unlike cotton, the cultivation of new wood offers significant ecological advantages. The production of pulp is very sustainable and also cost-effective. On top of that, pulp is a circular material; since it contains neither plastic nor other chemical components, it can be recycled and reused effortlessly.

The backbone of innovations

Recently, Spinnova announced that they will build their first textile production factory in Jyväskylä. The main supplier of machinery for the new factory will be our customer Valmet. Valmet is a developer and supplier of technologies and services designed to maximise resource and energy efficiency for the pulp, paper and energy industries. And there are even more examples of the “bio jump” in our customer portfolio.

As a forerunner in the forest industry, sustainability is an integral part of everything UPM is doing. All innovations are aimed at sustainability and a future beyond fossil fuels. Walki and Wipak are on a mission to establish zero waste and zero carbon footprint in the packaging industry, Fortum Recycling & Waste is leading the shift to circular economy and conservation of natural resources in the energy sector. So it can be seen, that no matter what industry our customers are in, sustainability is a goal of the highest importance for all of them.

With our no-code platform, we provide a tool that serves as a backbone to manage all these ideas and innovations, make strategic decisions, and ultimately bring the best innovations to market as quickly as possible – thus causing a positive impact on our future.

Dare to take the jump

In summing-up, there is as much change happening in sustainability as there is in digitalisation. Everyone in the world is affected and innovating sustainable solutions is the hottest topic right now. Especially in Europe, we have a high level of investment in digitalisation as well as sustainability innovations. All large, as well as many smaller companies, have sustainability tightly integrated into their corporate strategy or mission and this is a trend that will not stop but accelerate even more.

As a company, we at Keto Software are proud to support influential companies in making innovation possible to pave the way to a more sustainable future. Despite all the euphoria, however, one thing must not be forgotten: Ideas alone are only a fraction of innovation. It is crucial to put the ideas into practice, or in other words: to dare the “bio jump”!