SoMax Circular Solutions was named the grand winner of the Distilled Spirits Council’s “Innovation Showcase” competition during the awards luncheon at the 2022 DISCUS Annual Conference in New Orleans.
SoMax Founder and CEO Dan Spracklin presented the company’s innovative resource recovery technology during the Shark Tank-style competition. The technology, which uses hydrothermal carbonization, can help distilleries convert distilling byproducts, including spent grains, into renewable energy, eliminating disposal costs while also improving the environment.
“There’s so much momentum in advancing sustainability in the spirits sector and this year’s Innovation Showcase highlighted exciting new products and technologies that can support distilleries in further reducing their environmental footprint,” said Chris Swonger, president, and CEO of DISCUS and Responsibility.org.
Six finalists were selected to compete in the Innovation Showcase sponsored by DISCUS partner member The Spearhead Group at this year’s conference. The finalists were chosen out of more than 30 submissions in categories spanning from spirits packaging, technology, supply chain, sustainability, marketing, structure, responsibility, and product development.
Each contestant had 15 minutes to present their innovation in front of a panel of judges who scored the innovation based on its concept, value, scalability, and demonstrated impact.
The judges were Jason Drook, VP Consumer & Industrial Business at CIA; Mariana Ruiz, Associate Director Client Services, NielsenIQ and Mark Gillespie, Host/Executive Producer of WhiskyCast. Lana Toler, Marketing & Innovation Manager for The Spearhead Group, moderated the event.
The first, second, and third place winners receive prize packages ranging in value from $5,000 to $20,000 including a $10,000 cash prize for the showcase winner.
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