Penn State creates food packaging material from wood and shells

By David Templeton
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
October 24, 2017
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: United States, US East

Jeffrey Catchmark had the ideal formula for an all-natural, nontoxic coating to replace plastic coatings and packaging used in the food industry, among other uses. Not only would it be cheaper than plastics but his formula would be biodegradable and nonpolluting.  …Its components include cellulose pulp from wood or cotton and a material known as chisosan, derived from chitin, a main component of exoskeletons of insects and crustaceans. Cellulose, the main component of wood, is one of the most readily available materials on the planet, Mr. Catchmark said. …He now is seeking a patent on the material, which he said could be used in wood-fiber composites for flooring, impervious films and industrial coatings and adhesives. It also could replace formaldehyde-based adhesives in many construction materials as well as uses in eco-friendly  cosmetics.  

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