In 2007, the spark that would become BLOOM began when Ryan Hunt began researching algae technology as a way to solve emerging problems with pollution in our environment.
He believed that algae could be used to help remove the harmful levels of phosphorus and ammonia present in industrial and agricultural waste-water that is causing ecologically harmful algae blooms and water quality issues.
However, after years of research, he discovered that the protein-rich algae biomass, when placed under significant heat, pressure, and time, underwent a plasticization process. That is when the lightbulb went off.
In 2010, Ryan teamed up with Mike Van Drunen, an engineer and entrepreneur, co-founding Algix, beginning the mission to use algae as a means of cleaning the environment while providing algae-based sustainable materials to the world.
Algix spent 2 years developing and refining the extrusion process, as well as developing a harvesting and drying technology, thus creating a commercially viable operation. Algix connected with governments, universities and private companies that were researching algae biotechnology, building a network of algae suppliers.
In 2014, Algix secured a 70,000 sq. ft. modern manufacturing facility in Meridian, Mississippi: the heart of catfish country, where they could research and utilize algae from both lakes around the world and right in their backyard.
In 2016, BLOOM, an Algix brand, launched the world’s first algae-blended EVA to the footwear industry as a sustainable ingredient in flexible foams for high rebound applications such as shoes, sporting products, and accessories.
Our first footwear launch was the Vivobarefoot Bloom Ultra III water shoe. It featured algae foam as the injection molded upper to showcase the Bloom material in a highly visible way.
Since then we’ve partnered with countless brands for everything from shoes to surfboards, helping them design eco-conscious products that have an active positive impact on the environment.
We’re looking forward to years to come of exciting innovations and partnerships. Join us on our mission to help the footwear industry Tread Well.
5168 Water Tower Road
Meridian, Mississippi, USA 39301