The Baltic Sea Day reminds us to reconsider our relationship with water

Almost all of Kiilto’s operating countries border the Baltic Sea. That’s why ongoing cooperation with the John Nurminen Foundation and participating in the annual Baltic Sea Day is vital to restoring the ecological balance of our shared seabed and shorelines. Partnering with start-ups like Origin by Ocean and developing new data-driven solutions like ProCIP can better preserve the Baltic Sea and other water resources for future generations.

Every year on the last Thursday in August the John Nurminen Foundation coordinates a Baltic Sea Day celebration, including countries and companies throughout Northern Europe. The goal is to bring attention to certain environmental problems related to one of the world’s youngest, but most polluted bodies of water – the Baltic Sea. Human caused eutrophication (algae blooms), microplastics and trash, and over-fishing pose the greatest risk to the Baltic Sea’s small, shallow and interdependent ecosystem.

“The John Nurminen Foundation has done a great job at sounding the alarm for the Baltic Sea. Now more people are informed about its current state and inspired to take action and find solutions,” says Ville Solja, Chief Business Development Officer at Kiilto.

Kiilto’s cooperation with the John Nurminen Foundation and its 250 partners started in 2021. Together we are stronger in fixing and preventing new damage to the Baltic Sea. Our vision and values, and Our Promise to the Environment support tangible work in restoring the ecological balance of our shared Sea that’s surrounded by 14 countries with about 85 million people.

Kiilto and Origin by Ocean collaboratively research bio-based raw materials

To tackle the eutrophication problem affecting 97% of the Baltic Sea, Kiilto has teamed up with Origin by Ocean. This start-up sees opportunity in refining harmful algae into bio-based raw materials used for everyday goods like cosmetics, detergents, and packaging and materials.

“Washing the Oceans speaks for Origin by Ocean’s ambition and what they are trying to solve, not just for the Baltic Sea but for oceans throughout the world. The founding team continues to attract interest globally because of their super-driven approach and extreme hunger to learn more about a problem of this magnitude,” says Solja.

Since 2020, Kiilto and Origin by Ocean have engaged in open innovation and product development with the intent to launch new and versatile products that include ingredients refined by Origin by Ocean from Baltic Sea algae.

“We have received different versions of raw materials from Origin by Ocean and tested them in our labs to evaluate their fit. Now we are getting closer to the next step in our cooperation, entering the scaleup phase in producing bigger commercial batches that will offer an alternative to fossil-based products,” adds Solja.

Developing solutions that save water as much as time and energy  

Water savings also plays a significant role in preserving unique and fragile aquatic habitats. This is because water-saving products and improved water usage techniques divert less water from our rivers, bays and estuaries, which helps keep the natural environment healthy and balanced.  

To promote water efficiency, Kiilto developed a new digital service, Kiilto ProCIP, for optimizing Clean-in-Place (CIP) washes in the food and beverage industry. Combining customer data with Kiilto’s environmental expertise not only ensures lower cleaning costs and higher hygiene standards, but also more verifiable time, energy and water savings.

“When less water, energy, chemicals and time are used for CIP it also serves Kiilto’s and the customer’s environmental goals,” Development Manager Pekka Sinisalo says.

John Nurminen’s continued work to save the Baltic Sea

Founded in 1992, the John Nurminen Foundation is an award-winning storyteller and conservationist dedicated to preserving the Baltic Sea and its cultural heritage for future generations. Since 2005, the Foundation has completed over 30 environmental projects that address eutrophication, microplastics and trash, over-fishing that threaten the Baltic Sea’s diverse and robust ecosystem. However, reducing the environmental load of runoff nutrients fuelling excessive algae and limiting oxygen levels remains a top priority.

The Baltic Sea can be saved, but urgent and concrete actions are needed now.