There’s a thing called the SIN List. Standing for Substitute It Now, the list identifies the chemicals in our textiles, furniture, food, and daily life that are slowly poisoning us, killing our bodies and environment. Replacing that list with nature-based alternatives is the mission of Humble Bee Bio, the ambitious biotech start-up of Veronica Harwood Stevenson. You may have heard of Humblebee, sometimes described as one of NZ’s hottest biotech start-ups. Now fives years into the journey the Wellington company is trying to replicate a cellophane-like substance found in bees’ nests to create a harmless bioplastic. Humble Bee has scored some wins. It’s sequenced the protein in question, poised to manufacture its synthetic alternative, and in the throes of a $13m capital raise. Vincent caught up with Veronica to discuss biology, bees bums, and babies.

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