Amsterdam, Netherlands, May 3, 2016 – Social enterprise startup Reflow is excited to announce the launch of its Kickstarter Campaign where supporters can get its ethical, sustainable and affordable high-quality 3D print filament. Reflow filament is made from recycled PET plastic bottles collected in developing regions, and revenues from filament flow back to the waste collectors who gather these bottles, increasing their income by up to twenty times.
With yearly growth rates in the 3D printing industry exceeding 30%, Reflow aims to turn this growth into income for more than 40 million waste collectors worldwide that collect waste for a living, earning less than $2 a day. The impact Reflow will have on these communities and on the environment is significant: every kg of filament sold results in the removal of 120 bottles from the streets and $3 additional income for waste collectors. Their aim is to sell 5000 kg of filament in the first three years. If they achieve this goal, waste collectors’ incomes will increase by $200000 and 6 million plastic bottles will be removed from the street.
Reflow believes that the disruption of manufacturing by 3D printing will happen in developing countries first. Just like mobile banking skyrocketed in Africa because of broken banking structures, 3D printing will take off because of broken distribution lines, high costs of transport, and lack of capital for large scale production. To truly build a different world and unleash the full potential of 3D printing, a fundamental shift is needed in how local economies in these countries operate: from depending on import to self-producing. 3D printing and other localised and decentralised production can play an important role in this change.
Reflow is a community enterprise that also espouses open source principles. They're working together with the World Bank on the Refabdar project in Tanzania and also depend on the valuable work of talented partners like STICLAB, local engineers and inventors in Tanzania and a network of universities and maker spaces like 3DHUBS.
Through their campaign, Reflow aims to raise €25,000 which will be used to fine-tune the existing extruder technology and test shredding and cleaning equipment to kick off the production of ethical filament. Rewards for Reflow’s Kickstarter campaign include rolls of Reflow filament and unique 3D printed art pieces. They’ve partnered with artists like Joshua Harker who have designed rewards that will be printed with Reflow filament.
About Reflow: For forward thinking creators everywhere, Reflow converts recyclable plastic into ethical, affordable, high-quality 3D print filament using open source technology. Their mission is to significantly improve the lives of waste pickers and to create a global, socially responsible 3D printing community.
# # #
If you would like more information about Reflow or to schedule an interview, please email Lyndsey or call +31 (0)6 42 24 04 38.