Impactful Health R&D


Mina Mekhail, Ph.D., Laila Benameur, Ph.D


Biotech & Life Sciences, Food Tech


Compostable packaging to prolong the shelf life of fresh food.

Food waste is a major problem in the world. A lot of food is wasted because of poor preservation methods that are both financially and environmentally harmful. Wasted produce ends up in landfills that create methane which contributes to greenhouse gas emissions. Moreover, a lot of value gets lost in the supply chain because of the perishability of food.

The Solution

Impactful Health R&D is creating the next generation of packaging that is both compostable and can extend the shelf life of fresh fish, which reduces both plastic pollution and organic waste.

The food industry’s preservation of fresh fish hasn’t changed for the past 50 years. The team developed compostable resin, which is a plastic that has similar properties to polyethylene-based plastic but is compostable in a composting facility. Their proprietary technology modifies the compostable film that has antibacterial properties that extend the shelf life of fish.

The Journey

As scientists, the two co-founders were experts in their fields and wanted to acquire the business know-how to launch their startup. With the help of District 3, the team completed the validation program to take their initial idea further.  

They found tremendous value in doing customer interviews, which gave them insight into developing their business model and honing their product for their target customers. The validation program helped them develop their network in the industry and secure their first clients.

The team has also benefited from the one on one coaching and mentoring, which helped guide them in overcoming roadblocks and reaching their milestones. According to Mina Mekhail, Co-founder of Impactful Health R&D, “MentorConnect has been extremely helpful in giving us a high-level view of our company to solve strategic issues. Having experienced mentors who really understand the pains that we’re going through was invaluable.” 

The founders were thinking global from the start, and are exploring international markets. Impactful Health R&D also received District 3 seed funding to help them complete their prototype and move closer to commercialization. The team secured investment from Ecofuel, and other investors. 

RECENT UPDATES: We are happy to announce that the team has been awarded “Innovative Business of the Year” at the 2023 Halifax Business Awards Gala on the evening of January 26th 2023. The gala was hosted by the Halifax Chamber of Commerce, and Dalhousie University was the official sponsor of the Business Innovation Award, in which they won.