Microorganism-based packaging to replace traditional paper and plastic
OUR SUPPORTERS & PARTNERS:
Need for treeless packaging
Whilst demand for printing, writing paper and newsprint is decreasing, the demand for packaging paper is expected to increase steadily, currently reaching nearly 60% of global paper consumption. However, roughly 50% of European paper comes from fresh fibers and steadily increasing recycling costs make recycling not worthwhile.
Currently, paper, pulp and packaging industry is faced with mounting environmental pressures as it is the 3rd largest industrial polluter of air, water and soil and contributes to global loss of forest landscapes.
Need for local production
During times of global inflation, rising energy and transportation prices companies are put to a test. This puts enormous pressure on cost driven businesses within the pulp and paper industry, where transportation makes up to even 20% of the total costs. As the long-distance transportation of pulp and paper products cannot be escaped, the logistics of low-cost and space demanding paper products becomes unprofitable, leading to shutdown of related production plants and related businesses.
We are harnessing the power of biology to produce microorganism-based fibers and bring them to market as natural biomaterials with excellent mechanical properties, high water holding capacity and outstanding suspension stability. Moreover, the yield efficiency exceeds the one of plants by more than 30 times and the purification is simpler and less polluting than cellulose extraction from wood. Additionally, the use of biological waste for production as well as the integration with already existing recycling infrastructure drives the overall process towards a circular economy and decreases the manufacturing costs. Further upscaling of microorganism-based production to vertical farming creates a unique opportunity to raise the yield-efficiency by a factor of 1000 compared to trees.
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