Shopping bags made from wood offer sustainable alternative to plastic bags

By Anthony Cuthbertson
The Independent
May 29, 2024
Category: Wood, Paper & Green Building
Region: International

A Swedish startup has discovered a technique to transform a waste product from the forestry industry into a bioplastic that can be used to make everything from shopping bags to smartphones. The bio-based material makes use of lignin, the chief constituent of wood that is typically discarded and burned in paper and pulp mills. A method developed by the eponymous Lignin Industries allows this unwanted lignin powder to be transformed into a biobased material called Renol. Renol has the same colour and smell as wood but the versatility of plastic, offering a sustainable alternative to the fossil-based materials that currently dominate the plastics industry. …After five years of development, Lignin Industries has figured out how to get rid of the rotten egg smell that comes from the chemical transformation, and maintain the original lignin smell, with the material now smelling like “wood from a forest”.

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