Scallops are the Japan’s most eaten shellfish and they are also the most discarded shells. Sarufutsu Village in Hokkaido boasts the largest scallop catch in Japan, and in 2021, exporters of discarded scallop shells withdrew from the area, leaving approximately 40,000 tons of shells behind. The discarded shells are said to cause soil pollution by experts.
From shells that protect against external enemies to objects that protect human life: Enter the Shellmet (Japanese name: Hotamet). Made of 100% recycled materials, these environmentally friendly helmets reduce CO2 emissions by up to 36% compared to plastic helmets. The Shellmet also realizes 133% higher strength than regular helmets by adopting a ribbed structure unique to shells. A system was established whereby the more Shellmets produced, the fewer discarded shells deposited. Once they finish their role as helmets, Shellmets can be crushed and reused. Shellmets are sold throughout Japan as a specialty product of Sarufutsu Village.
Impact & results:
This project not only solved an environmental issue, but the material is also gaining attention as a potential alternative to plastic.
・Sales 1,397% of expected
・24 tons+ of shells will be recycled in first year
・34 countries reported on the product
・Expo 2025 Osaka, Kansai, Japan adopted the Shellmet as its official helmet
・16 global companies announced their introduction of the Shellmet
2023 New York Festivals Advertising Awards: Grand, Gold (Package & Product Design: Best Use: Best New Green Product Design), Silver (Package & Product Design: Products & Services: Durable Goods), Bronze (Avant-garde/Innovative: Avant-garde/Innovative: Product Innovation)
2023 Cannes Lions: Gold (Design, Innovation), Bronze (Creative Business Transformation)
2023 Clio Health Awards: Grand (Design), Gold (Innovation)