Applications for The Circular Lab at Roskilde Festival 2023 are open. Apply here and read first-hand experiences from five aspiring companies who participated in 2022. 

Text: Julie Hindkjær, volunteer web journalist at Roskilde Festival

At Roskilde Festival 2022, 28 companies were granted access to 130,000 festival participants, network, new potential investors, new resources and new ideas to their green solutions through The Circular Lab.

This year we once again open the gates to the barn at camping F where The Circular Lab resides. Here, young entrepreneurs can stress test their green business models, ideas, products and designs, and now you can apply to become part of The Circular Lab at Roskilde Festival 2023.

A kaleidoscope of various green profiles

But who are the companies that can test their ideas in The Circular Lab, and what insights did they gain from participating? Here you can meet five companies that were based in the camping area during the Roskilde Festival in 2022.

Who are we looking for?
We are looking for young entrepreneurs aged 16 to 30 who hold the key to a circular future and who want to test it in a unique and easily accessible setting.

Read more about which solutions we prioritise here.

The deadline for applications is January 19, and you can read all about the application process here.

BærTex – upcycling textiles

BærTex upcycles pieces of textile that are normally thrown away or sent for incineration. The textiles are turned into sheets from which BærTex cuts designs so that they can be used in various contexts. Here you can meet BærTex's CEO, Mathias Rolf Jensen, who founded the company in 2020.

Textile waste gets new life at BærTex
“The first design we have made is a drop-shaped lamp that consists of sheets made from recycled textiles. By recycling discarded textiles which would otherwise be burned, we save the planet from an enormous amount of greenhouse gas emission," says Mathias Rolf Jensen.

Response and exposure through The Circular Lab
"I can show people that discarded clothes can actually be turned into something new, nice and functional. Then I can get a lot of response from the festival participants who are the generation that will help carry these concepts forward," says Mathias Rolf Jensen.

BærTex wants you to extend the life of the clothes
"You must always repair your clothes before you throw them away. You need to extend the life of the clothes, in whatever way you want to do it, before it ends up with us as textile waste," says Mathias Rolf Jensen.

What is The Circular Lab?
The Circular Lab was created in collaboration between Roskilde Festival and Tuborgfondet, and it aims to support the work process of young entrepreneurs in both developing their green innovative solutions and giving them the opportunity to test them at Roskilde Festival.

Kombucha Time – sustainable soft drink

Funded in 2017, Kombucha Time offers a healthier and more sustainable kombucha alternative using leftover products. Believing in the purest product possible, Kombucha Time does not add anything after the fermentation process has begun. As a matter of fact, The Circular Lab sparked a new collaboration, says owner Julie Boye-Hansen.

From residual product to healthy and sustainable soft drink
"We use residual products from Bite which we then ferment and make into kombucha in various flavours. We offer our kombucha as a healthier and more sustainable alternative, because when we use their leftover products in collaboration with Bite, we get many liters of drinks from a few products without using new resources," says Julie Boye-Hansen.

Festival guests have an impact on the taste
"We get the opportunity to test our new kombucha flavor so we can find out what flavor profile people want. At the same time, we are exposed to a lot of different people, but we also get some immediate attitudes and some points of preference, which we can proceed with," says Julie Boye-Hansen.

Sharing is caring, so we work to put more empathy into fashion consumption
Sharedrobes – circular wardrobe

Sharedrobes is a circular wardrobe app where users recycle and swap clothes with each other. You can upload your entire wardrobe to get an overview, put outfits together, and select what you want to exchange next. And at The Circular Lab there was physical feedback to a digital platform.

A physical format tested at the festival
"What's great about being in The Circular Lab is that we get to test what we do digitally in a physical format, where we have a starting wardrobe with us at the festival with donated clothes. Then festival guests can bring their clothes which they no longer use and exchange them for some similar clothes. We get to see what works and what doesn't, and then we also get feedback on the platform we already have," says Maria Clemmensen, CEO and founder of Sharedrobes.

Clothes become currency at Sharedrobes
"Where second-hand is about us buying from each other, Sharedrobes is about us using our clothes as currency instead. So when we remove the financial element, we might get people to buy less clothes," says Maria Clemmensen.

Sharedrobes wants you to share rather than buy clothes
"Our mission is to make sharing wardrobes as normal as buying new clothes. Sharing is caring, so we try to put more empathy into fashion consumption," says Maria Clemmensen.

It is an enormous help for us to have our product tested!
Tempty Foods – innovative with mycoprotein

Basing their products on mycoprotein, Tempty Foods offer a new alternative to both meat and tofu. Made by fermentation with fungal spores, mycoprotein is used as one of the main materials in Tempty Foods' mix with various plant-based ingredients. Tempty Foods was created in 2021 in collaboration between Ana Pejic, Cecilie Engvang Lund and Martina Lokajova, and Tempty Foods had a busy Roskilde Festival 2022 filled with curious guests.

Wanted: more plant-based meals
"When we produce our product, it requires very little CO2, and if you compare it to products such as ground beef, our product requires 34 times less CO2 per kilo. If you eat our product or other plant-based products just once or twice a week, it would save a lot of CO2 emissions," says Cecilie Engvang Lund.

Plant-based alternative made easy to use
"We shape our plant-based ingredients it so that people can quickly and easily bake or fry them on the pan. Our product can replace the meat in any dish," says Ana Pejic.

Festival guests as judges of taste
"It helps us enormously to have our product tested! Right now we are doing different taste tests so that we can find out which product we should go ahead with on the market," says Ana Pejic.

VAER – new sneakers from old clothes

VAER is a textile upcycling startup that makes sneakers from textile waste. Lili Dreyer, Emma Hjortdal and Linda Egtved Olesen founded VAER in 2019, and instead of scratching up the textiles, VAER uses them as they are, thus preserving their history.

Design your own sneakers at the festival
"By being at the festival, we are allowed to test this concept where you can make your own sneakers. Then the consumer can be involved in the entire design process, so they can choose textiles from what we have available and/or bring something and cut the patterns themselves. So they make everything ready, so that the production just has to sew it together and put a sole on," says Emma Hjortdal.

VAER wants more upcycling
"New is out, and upcycling is the way forward. Among consumption categories in Europe with the highest environmental impact, textiles are ranked four. There is an insane amount of textiles out there that unfortunately cannot be recycled, e.g. if they have a stain or a hole. But it can still be upcycled, so we fight to ensure that we upcycle even more textiles," says Lili Dreyer.

Visit The Circular Lab
This summer, a new team of young entrepreneurs will test their green initiatives at Roskilde Festival in collaboration with The Circular Lab. Camping area F will once again host the lab in 2023, and here you will be able to meet all the new and budding entrepreneurs as well as well-known faces such as the sneaker company VAER, who will once again come to the festival to test. 

If you want to bring your green solution to The Circular Lab, you can read all about how to apply to The Circular Lab at Roskilde Festival right here.