(English below)

60% zemlje u Grčkoj posvećeno je uzgoju maslina. Na vrhu je svetskih proizvođača crnih maslina, takođe ima najveći broj različitih vrsta maslina. Grčka je treća u svetu po proizvodnji proizvoda od maslina, a bogata je sa više od 132 miliona stabala koji proizvode oko 350.000 tona maslina godišnje.

Jonska i egejska ostrva, zajedno sa ostrvima Krit i Peloponez su regije koje prednjače u proizvodnji maslina u Grčkoj. Patras je najveći grad na ostrvu Peloponez gde Aleksandra Makrigeorgu živi. Aleksandra je osnivačica društvenog preduzeća ,,Liofilo’’, ona je takođe majka dvoje dece i nezaposlena već čitavih pet godina. Nakon ekonomske krize u Grčkoj, stopa nezaposlenosti je porasla i veliki broj mladih ljudi je napustilo zemlju. Aleksandra je odlučila da ostane u zemlji i da se bori za buduće generacije, pogotovo za svoje dve ćerke.

Dakle, ona je odlučila da sa ljudima koji su imali isti san poput nje stvori nešto novo.  Tako je nastao ,,Liofyllo’’, start-up koji ima za cilj da obradi neiskorišćene prirodne sirovine i stvori nove, inovativne, ekološki prihvatljive supstance za široki spektar upotrebe. Široki asortiman rukotvorina, umetnina, objekata i ostalih raznih proizvoda nastalih upotrebom lista maslina, pre svega reč je o materijalima koji nisu štetni za našu okolinu, ali takođe promovišu mediteransku, a samim tim i grčku kulturu i viševekovnu tradiciju uzgoja maslina.

Alexandra Makrygeorgou

Kako je nastala ideja da se koristi baš list masline?

  •  Postojanje ogromnih neiskorišćenih prirodnih sirovina, koje se smatraju odbačenima ili otpadom dok se one ustvari mogu dalje koristit i reciklirati, su nas inspirisale. Kroz upoznavanje sa raznim savremenim istraživanjima započeli smo razvoj naše ideje o novim inovativnim materijalima. Ovaj put se radilo o pravljenju novog materijala iz maslinovog otpada.

Kako bi opisala značaj maslina u tvom životu?

  • Maslina je simbol civilizacije, mira, prosperiteta, dugovečnosti i plemenite konkurencije. Grčka je treći najveći proizvođač maslinovog ulja, nakon Španije i Italije. Moja kuća se nalazi usred velikog maslinika, tako da sam uvek bila okružena maslinama. Sa zajedničkom brigom svih nas kako možemo zaštititi životnu sredinu izbegavajući linearnu potrošnju, u martu 2018. godine rođena je ideja ,,Liofyl-a’’. Vodeći tim se sastoji od pet žena različitih akademskih profila, profesionalnog i životnog iskustva.

U prevodu ,, Liofyllo” znači list masline, čitav start-up je dobio ime upravo po materijalu koji se koristi za proizvodnju sirovina.

Koja je ustvari svrha ,,Liofyllo’’ preduzeća?

  • ,,Liofyllo’’ u skladu sa principima kružne ekonomije, stvara inovativni ekološki materijal od neiskorišćenih maslinovih listova, kako bi se smanjila proizvodnja i upotreba materijala koji nije ekološki. Mi koristimo ovaj materijal za kreiranje panela pre svega. Do sada smo koristili naše panele u stvaranju ambalaže, a takođe sarađujemo i sa sa modnim dizajnerom „Ms Thimble“ koji ih koristi u izradi eko-torbica od plute. Zatim, koristimo novi materijal za kreiranje jedinstvenog umetničkog dizajna i dekorativnih predmeta koji promovišu grčku kulturu. Iako u svetu postoje mnoge kompanije koje koriste prirodne sirovine, za sada, niko od njih ne koristi maslinovo lišće na ovaj način na koji ga mi koristimo. Prateći principe kružne ekonomije, koja je u stvari i deo naše start-up politike, mi iznova koristimo panele koji su potpuno uništeni tokom proizvodnog procesa, dakle ništa se ne baca. Nakon što se proizvodi od naših materijala istroše, nema potrebe da se bace, jer mi ih ponovno prerađujemo i upotrebljavamo kao novu sirovinu za naše umetničke kreacije.
Photo: Liofyllo

Kako vidite uticaj ,,Liofyllo’’  na lokalnu zajednicu?

  • ,,Liofyllo’’ je startup u ranoj fazi razvoja. Uticaj na našu zajednicu vidimo kroz projekte u kojima smo učestvovali. Do sada smo učestvovali u evropskom projektu “Eco-step Youth” (http://ecostep-youth.eu/) u saradnji sa NVO iz Patrasa- InterMediaKT (https://intermediakt.org) u cilju informisanja građana i organizacija o inovativnim rešenjima za eko materijale, sve to kroz inkluzivne i edukativne ekološke radionice. Učestvovali smo u promociji poljoprivredno-prehrambenog sektora „AGROINNOECO“ kao ključni govornici. Takođe, naše prisustvo na različitim seminarima imalo je važnu ulogu u širenju informacija o dobrim praksama za startup-e. Konačno, učestvovali smo u programu inkubatora ,,Orange Grove’’. Pored toga,  bili smo među prvih 22 finalista, u konkurenciji od njih 1000, u godišnjem mediteranskom programu ,,Rise for Change’’(www.riseforchange.net) za socijalno preduzetništvo, u organizaciji Organizacije Ujedinjenih nacija za industrijski razvoj (UNIDO) i Fondazione CRT.
Photo: Liofyllo

Ideje za budućnost?

  • ,,Liofyllo’’ je nastao na temeljima zelenog, socijalnog i ženskog preduzetništva. Želimo da nastavimo naš razvoj baš na ovim temeljima kako bismo doprineli jačanju ovog sektora preduzetništva i da podstaknemo više ljudi da pokušaju da pokrenu nešto svoje. Još uvek radimo sa sopstvenim sredstvima, tako da smo stalno u potrazi za novim partnerstvima, sponzorstvima sa pojedincima, institucijama, kompanijama, organizacijama, sve u cilju podrške i jačanja naših raznolikih i stvaralaštva.

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Olive waste as a new material

Greece devotes 60% of its cultivated land to olive oil growing. It is the world’s top producer of black olives and has many varieties of olives than any other country. Greece holds third place in world olive production with more than 132 million trees which produce 350.000 tones of olive oil annually.

Photo: Pexels

Ionian islands, Aegean islands together with Crete and Peloponnese are the regions which produce the most of olives. Patras is the biggest city on the island of Peloponnese where Makrygeorgou Alexandra lives. Alexandra is the founder & the chairwoman of social enterprise “Liofyllo”, she is a mother of two little girls and unemployed for the last five years. After the economic crisis in Greece, unemployment has risen and most young people left the country.

So, Alexandra decided to fight for the next generations and in particular for a better future for her daughters. So, she has chosen to create something on her own with people who had the same dream like hers. She created Liofyllo, a start-up which aim is to process untapped natural raw materials by creating an innovative, environmentally-friendly substance and a wide variety of crafts, creations, artworks, products and objects deriving from the olive leaves in order to protect the environment as well as promote the Mediterranean culture and, especially, the Greek one.

-How the idea of using olive leaves was born?

A: -The existence of enormous unexploited natural raw materials, which are considered to be rejects or waste while they can be exploited and recycled, inspired us. Together with modern research we started the development of idea of new innovative materials. This time it was about making new material from the olive tree waste.

-What do olives mean for you?

A: -The olive tree, a Mediterranean one, is a sacred symbol of civilization, peace (Olympic Games), prosperity, longevity and noble competition. Greece is the third largest producer of olive oil, following Spain and Italy. My house is located amidst a large olive grove, so I’ve been always surrounded by olives. With the common concern of all of us how we can protect the environment by escaping from the linear consumption, in March 2018, the idea of Liofyllo was born. Liofyllo is a Greek idiom of olive leaf. The leading team consists of five women with different academic backgrounds, professional experience and soft skills that are optimally matched to the rapid growth of the company.

-What is Liofyllo’s purpose?

A: -Liofyllo, in harmony with the principles of the circular economy, creates an innovative eco-friendly material (that is in the process of evaluating a patent globally) from the untapped olive leaves and adhesives to reduce the production and the use of materials, which are not environmentally friendly. We use this material to create, firstly, panels. So far, we have been using our panels in premium packaging and we have collaboration with a fashion designer “Ms Thimble” who uses them in the eco-handbags that creates from cork fabric. Secondly, we use the novel material to create unique art design and decorative pieces which promote Greek culture since the olive tree is interwoven with our country. Although there are many companies worldwide which exploit natural raw materials, none of them use olive leaves in this way. Following the principles of the circular economy, which is actually part of our startup policy too, we reuse the destroyed panels that were completely ruined during the production process. Moreover, after natural wear out of our products, we recollect them and reuse them as a new raw material for our artistic creations.

Photo: Liofyllo

-How does Liofyllo influence local community?

A: -Liofyllo is a startup in an early stage of development. So far it has participated in the European program “Eco-step youth” of the NGO InterMediaKT in order to inform citizens – organizations for innovative solutions through attractive and participatory educational actions with an environmental objective. I have participated in the promotion of the agri-food sector competition “AGROINNOECO” as a key speaker. I can say thet my presence during the meetings played a pivotal role as a paragon of good practices for startups. In September 2018, the artworks (olive wreath) were selected by the children’s art gallery of Greece as awards for little artists at a ceremony held in Zappeion. Finally, Liofyllo participates at the incubator program of the Orange Grove and it is one of the 22 finalists (the only Greek participation) among 1,000 applications in the annual Mediterranean program «Rise for Change» (www.riseforchange.net) for social entrepreneurship, organized by the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) and the Fondazione CRT.

-Your idea for the future?

A: -Liofyllo has main pillars the green, social and female entrepreneurship. As a result of our actions is the contribution to reinforce these sectors of entrepreneurship and inspire more people to deal with them.

As long as we are dealing with own funds, we are trying to find partnerships – sponsorships with individuals, institutions, entities, companies, organizations in order to support and strengthen our multilevel actions.

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2 KOMENTARA

  1. I like it, i hope this can spread to many people and maybe people will understand how to live eco friendly. Thanks Nina… keep it up👍

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