HOW A PLASTIC BOTTLE CHANGED LIVES
The story of LUQEL began with a fateful encounter on an idyllic Caribbean beach.
A LITTLE PARADISE IN THE CARIBBEAN
A little paradise in the Caribbean and the water appears crystal-clear. However, appearances can be deceiving. A plastic bottle with a German label was washed up onto this beach from the seas. The bottle has been exposed to the ravages of sunlight and the effects of salt water. Some day, in hundreds of years, it will no longer be recognisable as a bottle – and yet it will continue to exist in the form of microplastics.
WATER AND PLASTIC DO NOT MIX
Josef Schucker pursued his childhood dream and set sail to explore the beauty of this world in the most remote of places. During his travels, he came across the washed-up bottle. It reminded him of how careless humanity is with its plastic waste and with nature, and how senseless it is to bottle water in plastic and then transport it thousands of miles. “It’s so simple,” he thought to himself. “Just turn on the tap and enjoy a glass of water.” In his home country of Germany, the quality of the tap water is safe to drink but it doesn’t always taste very good.
In search of a solution, Schucker encountered THE expert in this field: Dr. Monique Bissen.
Monique Bissen is a qualified engineer working in the field of water chemistry and has over 20 years’ experience in the treatment of water. She believes the combination of water and plastic to be unhealthy. She is annoyed that many water-treatment devices used by people at home or at work to avoid plastic bottles still contain too much plastic that the water stored is constantly contaminated by the material.
Water is a clear liquid and is often assumed to be clean and safe. Dr Bissen knows that tap water in many countries is good but is certain that the quality of water will deteriorate as microplastics increasingly enter our drinking water. Invisible to the naked eye, these tiny particles, whose effects we are only now beginning to discern, are causing irreparable damage to the environment and to fish and sea birds. Dr Bissen is convinced that we must separate drinking water and plastic, turn our back on standard water and embrace our individual requirements. She envisages a pure, completely individualised water. This new water not only needs to be packaged differently. It has to be better and requires a completely new, plastic-free method of water treatment. She is certain that she can be achieved.
Dr. Monique Bissen
LUQEL - Water as individual as you are
Both entrepreneurs place great emphasis on quality, and both want to improve how we drink water around the world. After countless experiments and nights of brainstorming, they were rewarded with great success – their first water recipes tasted fantastic. They designed the initial technical drawing of the LUQEL Water Station on paper. At its heart is the unique liquid dosing technology using mineral ions in combination with a multi-stage filtration system. This allows every user to draw their favourite personalised water in pristine quality at the press of a touchscreen.
A company was created, and team employed to develop the technology. In early 2018, there were 30 employees; by early 2019, there were more than 70 staff members They are all filled with the same enthusiasm and want to help revolutionise the way we drink water. They all have a clear vision of what LUQEL is about: water as individual as you are.
THE LUQEL VISION
We need to change water drinking habits worldwide. We need to turn the tide on plastic! Plastic seriously damages our health and the environment.
A hidden champion from Luxembourg: Dr Monique Bissen. A qualified engineer with a doctorate – almost exotic, one might say. Awarded with the doctorate award of the "Wasserchemische Gesellschaft” (“Water Chemistry Association”) She has been focusing on water for over 20 years now. For more than 10 years, this water-treatment expert worked for leading companies in the water sector, most recently in managerial positions. She develops, she holds patents, she pushes for innovation in an industry she views as almost resistant to new ideas. Her ideas fell on deaf ears. And she was given no scope for entrepreneurship. Dr Bissen was in search of an inspiring challenge in her element – water.
A hidden champion from Pforzheim: Josef Schucker spent 25 years growing his business. The mechatronics engineer built his company into a globally leading provider of adhesive systems and dosing technology. His developments revolutionised industrial adhesion and tapped into completely new areas of application. He then decided to sell his company and realise his childhood dream – he set his sails and took to the high seas. During his journey, he kept encountering plastic waste, both on the open ocean as well as on the world’s most beautiful beaches.