No need to refresh your computer; the headline does not include typos! Are you wondering how someone can make sustainable car parts out of tequila?
It sounds crazy, but it is possible to make cars parts out of agave, which is found in tequila.
Ford Motor Company announced earlier this week that it is working with Jose Cuervo®, the world’s No. 1-selling tequila, to develop a sustainable, lightweight material for use in its vehicle lineup. The collaboration expands the automaker’s portfolio of earth-conscious materials to include agave.
Ford began researching the use of sustainable materials in its vehicles in 2000. Today, the automaker uses several bio-based materials in its vehicles, and is testing many more for future applications including algae, tomato peel and carbon dioxide.
The work helps improve Ford’s environmental impact by reducing the use of petrochemicals and reducing carbon emissions while also light-weighting vehicles to reduce fossil fuel use.
During the Ford sustainability event at Mudhen Meats and Greens, I learned about all the amazing eco-friendly efforts they are making. They are definitely walking-the-walk when it comes to ‘being green’.
Did you know Ford vehicles are 95% recyclable?
Materials used in Ford sustainable car parts
Tomatoes: Researchers at Ford and Heinz are investigating the use of tomato fibers in developing sustainable, composite materials for use in vehicle manufacturing. Specifically, dried tomato skins could become the wiring brackets in a Ford vehicle or the storage bin a Ford customer uses to hold coins and other small objects.
Soybeans: Ford was the first automaker in the world to demonstrate that soy-based polyols could be used at high percentage levels to make foam capable of meeting or exceeding automotive requirements. Through its use of soy foam, Ford is able to reduce its petroleum usage by 5 million pounds annually and its carbon dioxide emissions by 20 million pounds annually
Wheat Straw: Ford Motor Company, in collaboration with academic researchers and supplier A. Schulman, is the first automaker to develop and use wheat straw-reinforced plastic in the storage bins of vehicles. This will reduce petroleum usage by some 20,000 pounds per year and reduce CO2 emissions by 30,000 pounds per year.
Coconut: Ford and The Scotts Miracle-Gro Company are researching the use of coconut fiber reinforcement for molded plastic parts to reduce the use of petroleum and make the parts lighter and more natural-looking. The coconut coir, or husks, are a waste stream from Scotts’ soil and grass seed products. The team is investigating their use as a renewable material in Ford vehicles.
Dandelion Greens: Ford and Ohio State University are researching dandelions for potential use as a sustainable resource for rubber. A milky-white substance that seeps from dandelion roots is used to produce the sustainable rubber and could potentially find its way into plastic parts in Ford vehicles, including cup holders, floor mat and interior trim.
I think it’s great that companies like Ford and Jose Cuervo are taking notice that sustainability is important. Every little effort helps!
Were you surprised to see the list of sustainable car parts Ford is making? Which car part were you most impressed with?