The London-based boffins have developed squishy pouches of water, which can be ripped open and sipped – or eaten whole.
The sack is created from natural sources and is completely bio-degradable and safe to consume.
Named Ooho, it is being developed by a team of scientists and business experts at Imperial College London.
The Skipping Rocks Lab team’s aim is to make “packaging waste disappear”. Ooho could be particularly useful at large events such as the London Marathon or Glastonbury, where an enormous amount of rubbish is generated.
The team have now raised some £800,000 on an online fundraiser campaign – double their original target.
They explained: “We want to solve the plastic waste problem and reduce climate impact from packaging.
Scientists have created an edible alternative to plastic water bottles
“Our packaging is cheaper than plastic and can encapsulate any beverage including water, soft drinks, spirits, and even cosmetics.
“Our goal is to make packaging disappear. It’s so natural that it is biodegradable and even edible.”
The squashy ball is an alternative to water bottles
“Ooho is perfect for hydration on the go. Think festivals, marathons and on the street.”
The concept still faces several challenges – for example, ensuring the blobs remain clean before consumption.
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The Ooho can be pierced and drank from or eaten whole
However, the creators are convinced the idea will be a success, even if mainstream water bottle manufacturers don't adopt them.
They said: "Anyone can make them in their kitchen, modifying and innovating the recipe. It’s not DIY but CIY–cook it yourself.”