Scientist Turned Entrepreneur Wins Innovation Award

Posted 15 Nov 2018

Dr Christina Delay, co-founder and CEO of Canberra startup Altina Drinks has been recognised for her innovative approach to tackling the Aussie drinking culture, winning the Canberra Women in Business Innovation Business Award.

Christina’s background in Chemistry and Biology have served her well in the startup, where she’s developed a range of Zero Proof Craft Cocktails. “I’ve worked hard to create beautiful, complex cocktails that pack a punch without alcohol. This has meant re-inventing methods traditionally used by the alcohol industry, to ensure no alcohol is used or produced during our processes. We didn’t want to replace the hangover with a sugar coma, so our drinks have no, or minimal added sugar, and we don’t rely on sugar-filled fruit juices to prop up the flavour.”

Christina continues, “our drinks are not mocktails – there’s nothing missing from them! And they rival any high-end cocktail in terms of presentation, having an interactive, or interesting experiential aspect to them. We want to take people on a journey and help them have a different experience, which really reflects our vision as a social enterprise.”

Speaking about her vision, Christina says, “We want to shake up the Aussie drinking culture by providing a real alternative to booze, creating memorable alcohol-free experiences, and working with organisations in the alcohol harm reduction space. We’re building a sustainable social enterprise to support this mission and are looking at new and interesting approaches to help us achieve impact.”

“I’m incredibly honoured to have been recognised with the Innovation Business Award. There’s a pool of amazing Canberra women doing great work in innovation, and they continually inspire me to be a champion for innovation and women in STEM. Canberra has a thriving innovation community, and we have been benefitted from the support of the Mill House Social Enterprise accelerator program, which is helping us to launch our social enterprise.”

Christina is hoping that winning this award will help raise the profile of Altina Drinks so they can continue their mission. “We want to shake up the Aussie drinking culture by providing a real alternative to booze, creating memorable alcohol-free experiences, and working with organisations in the alcohol harm reduction space. We’re building a sustainable social enterprise to support this mission and are looking at new and interesting approaches to help us achieve impact.”

She also wants to be a role model for young women. “My career journey shows that it is possible for women with a science background to break out of the traditional career path. As CEO of a social enterprise, I am demonstrating how science can be commercialised and that STEM skills can be translated to the business world for the benefit of society.”

Altina Drinks has its official launch party on 1 December, where over 100 of Canberra’s biggest movers and shakers can enjoy Altina’s range of Zero Proof Craft Cocktails.

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