First Austrians to join All-Female eXXpedition across the Atlantic to research impact of plastic in the oceans

Publication Date:

15 October 2019

  • eXXpedition is an all-female sailing voyage with a goal to research the impact of single-use plastic in the ocean
  • Marita Schmid’s journey on board is sponsored by Mondi, a global paper and packaging company
  • It is the first time that Austrian women will be joining the eXXpedition 

Marita Schmid is a sustainability expert from Mondi, a global leader in innovative and sustainable packaging and paper solutions. To develop a more holistic view about the impact of single use plastics, she is participating as one of two Austrians on the transatlantic leg of the international all-female sailing eXXpedition Round the World voyage. 

The eXXpedition Round the World voyage, which sets sail from Plymouth, UK on 8 October, 2019, will travel through some of the most important and diverse marine environments on the planet in over 30 voyage legs. This includes crossing four of the five oceanic gyres, where ocean plastic is known to accumulate, and the Arctic. 

Leg 2 will be the first time two Austrians take part. Schmid will be joining a crew of 13 other women to research and highlight the impact of single-use plastic on the ocean. The 14-woman crew will travel from the Azores to Antigua through the North Atlantic Gyre on the on board the S.V. TravelEdge, a 73 ft expedition sailing vessel and floating research lab from 27 October to 18 November, 2019. 

Schmid, an experienced and passionate sailor who co-runs the Austrian Laserclass, will be one of two first Austrians to join the voyage. “I am excited to research the impact that single-use plastic has on our oceans, and share this knowledge with the packaging industry, where we are working towards making packaging more sustainable as part of a circular economy” she explained. 

Mondi is sponsoring Schmid’s participation during the eXXpedition Round the World Leg 2 from the Azores to Antigua. “We are committed to developing innovative and sustainable packaging together with our customers to meet their sustainability goals and commitments, while also doing what’s best for the planet. We are pleased to support Marita in her expedition as this aligns with our view that packaging should be sustainable by design along the entire value chain by following three actions; reduce, replace, and recycle.” explained Graeme Smith, Sustainability Manager of Mondi’s flexible packaging business. 

eXXpedition is a Community Interest Company and not-for-profit organisation founded in 2014. This expedition is part of a two-year journey, where over 300 women will, in over 30 voyage legs, cover more than 38,000 nautical miles. The organisation partners with internationally recognised ocean plastic experts to carry out plastics-related citizen science in cooperation with the University of Georgia in the US and the University of Plymouth in the UK. 

You can follow the journey of eXXpedition here and Schmid’s personal Instagram here.


Judith Wronn, Senior Communication Manager, Mondi Flexible Packaging

Tel: +49 151 17714692
Email: [email protected]

About Mondi

Mondi is a global leader in packaging and paper, delighting its customers and consumers with innovative packaging and paper solutions that are sustainable by design. Our business is fully integrated across the packaging and paper value chain – from managing forests and producing pulp, paper and plastic films, to developing and manufacturing effective industrial and consumer packaging solutions. Sustainability is embedded in everything we do. In 2018, Mondi had revenues of €7.48 billion and underlying EBITDA of €1.76 billion.

Mondi has a premium listing on the London Stock Exchange (MNDI), and a secondary listing on the JSE Limited (MNP). Mondi is a FTSE 100 constituent, and has been included in the FTSE4Good Index Series since 2008 and the FTSE/JSE Responsible Investment Index Series since 2007.


About eXXpedition Round the World

The voyage aims to:

  • Support solutions science by contributing to world class scientific studies that are urgently needed to inform up-stream solutions and close the loop on plastic waste on land
  • Challenge perceptions by using our platform to inform and educate so that people can better understand the real problem of micro-plastics and use that to shape actions and solutions
  • Create a community of change-makers and inspiring global ambassadors to tackle plastic pollution back on dry land. During their ocean experience participants discover the power of their individual roles in addressing the issues. Empowered by their first-hand experience at sea we provide the tools, confidence and support they need to become effective leaders that can influence meaningful impact through their personal and professional communities. 

Who’s on board?

Scientists, artists, filmmakers, teachers, doctors, sustainability experts ... our Round the World crew will be made up of a multidisciplinary and international group of women. 

More detailed information on the voyage, crew and our partners, can be found at  

The eXXpedition press release on Round the World can be found here