On May 18th, the Ohio State University’s West Campus welcomed visitors to celebrate scientific progress and sustainability, while providing a stage for participating departments and community partners to showcase their work. The Ohio Soy Sustainable Summer fit well within the mission of the event, as we again introduced consumers to the benefits of a biobased lifestyle. We also introduced a new activity at this event: Biobased Bubbles. In addition to our bioproducts identification activity, we allowed consumers to see our mission in action.
Our biobased bubbles included three major ingredients: USDA Certified Biopreferred dish liquid, water, and vegetable glycerin. Glycerin is a sugar alcohol that can be derived from various plant-based oils, including coconut and soy. We interact with glycerin in our kitchens and bathrooms quite frequently, as it is an ingredient in soaps, lotions, cosmetics, and even cough syrup.
Glycerin is common ingredient in the beauty aisle due to its moisturizing ability. These qualities make a great alternative to mineral oil, which is a petroleum byproduct of gasoline production. Checking a product’s label for vegetable glycerin over a mineral oil is a simple way to begin a biobased lifestyle.
For those interested in do-it-yourself projects, vegetable glycerin is also available for purchase in many grocery and craft stores for use in making your own soaps and beauty products. While we used it to make our own bubble solution, we found that many West Fest attendees were curious about the other applications of the main ingredient.
In addition to bottling up their own biobased bubbles, attendees were also able to learn about the science of sound, see glaciers move, and take home their very own tomato plant. As we move forward into the rest of the season, we are excited to bring the Ohio Soy Sustainable Summer to more events throughout the state. Up next: the Paulding County Fair.
This article was written by Haley Wilson, OBIC Student Assistant and Senior at The Ohio State University.