Despite serious efforts by environmentalists to promote the use of alternatives, consumers have been reluctant to give up single-use plastic water bottles. In the U.S. alone, 38 billion water bottles end up in landfills or the ocean per year. Not only is this plastic problem poisoning our environment, it’s also burning through precious nonrenewable resources.

Enter Rodrigo García González, Pierre Paslier and Guillaume Couche, co-founders of London-based startup Skipping Rocks Lab. For the past few years, these innovators have been working on an interesting solution to the plastic bottle dilemma: water encased inside an edible container. The “Ooho,” as it’s been dubbed, is a completely biodegradable, edible water blob — and it may just be the future of portable water.

What Is It?

The Ooho orb consists of water surrounded by a jelly-like membrane made of brown algae and calcium chloride. The squishy but strong gel-like container decomposes after four to six weeks if not consumed. The inventors say this sustainable packaging alternative can hold any kind of liquid, including soft drinks, liquor and even cosmetics. What’s more, the packaging is cheaper than plastic, costing less than 2 cents to produce.

How Does It Work?

To make an Ooho, a blob of water is frozen and immersed in a calcium chloride solution — this is what forms the gelatinous layer around the liquid. Then, the ball is bathed in brown algae extract to create a second, reinforcing layer. Branding can be applied by putting an edible label between the two layers of the membrane. Edible, hygienic and 100 percent biodegradable, the gel membrane has no taste — though the designers say flavors can be added.

There are two ways to drink from an Ooho. You can either tear a hole and pour it into your mouth or consume it whole. If you’d prefer not to eat the casing, you can dispose of it guilt-free. It’s far more environmentally responsible than single-use plastic water bottles. If you need to carry a large amount of water, smaller spheres can be bundled together…