GC3 Issues $175,000 Challenge for New Personal & Household Products Preservatives

The Green Chemistry & Commerce Council (GC3) opened a grand challenge offering $175,000 in total prize funding for new preserves for personal care and household products.

Preservatives are substances that are added to products to prevent them from spoiling. These chemicals work by retarding microbial growth and preventing product degradation. In addition to being used in foods, preservatives are added to household and personal care products. Due to concerns about the safety of some preservatives that have been in wide use, and the impact of repeated contact with these chemicals on human health, the Seekers desire new and effective preservatives or preservative boosters with improved environmental health and safety profiles for use in personal care and household products.

The Seekers are looking for submissions on:

1.     Broad spectrum or single action chemical agents on gram-positive bacteria, gram-negative bacteria, yeast, and mold

2.     Preservative boosters (optimizers or potentiators)/multi-functional ingredients that have a primary non-preserving function, yet enhance antimicrobial efficacy

The Seekers expect to award three-to-five cash prizes from a prize pool of $175,000, with a minimum single prize award of $25,000. No awards are guaranteed unless the submissions meet or exceed the criteria.

The Seekers have a preference for broad spectrum solutions and intend to award higher amounts to submissions that demonstrate activity addressing two or more of the following: gram positive bacteria, gram negative bacteria, mold, and yeast.

Up to five finalists will be invited to present their technologies at a meeting in February or March 2018 in the United States (with funding provided to offset some travel costs) and to network with representatives from consumer product companies and preservative suppliers.

All solvers who submit to this challenge will gain visibility and receive feedback on their technologies. A solver does not have to be a finalist in order to be afforded these opportunities. Furthermore, companies (listed below) may be interested in partnering on joint development of, investment in, and/or licensing promising technologies. 

This is a Reduction-to-Practice Challenge that requires written documentation and experimental proof-of-concept data.