Plant based lamination might sound like something out of a sci-fi novel, but with plastic ban regulations incoming, it’s a unique alternative. Since many laminations include a thin plastic film, laminated items often are not recyclable.
In this blog post, we’re shining the spotlight on cellogreen, a plant based lamination alternative. Read on to find out more!
What Is Cellulose?
Cellulose is a structural molecule mainly found in plant cells. It’s so widely available that almost 33% of all vegetable matter is made cellulose! This material can be derived from either plants themselves, or plant waste. Cellulose can be used in a number of different packaging applications depending on the different polymers or plasticizers it’s mixed with.
What Is Cellogreen?
Cellogreen is made from cellulose diacetate, which comes from wood pulp. The cellulose in the material comes from forests that comply with Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI) standards. By adding a plasticizer to the pulp, you get the cellogreen film!
This film comes in four finishes: gloss, matte, semi matte, and silk! The material is suitable for a variety of applications like foil, gluing, and screen UV varnish. It differs from traditional films by deriving from sustainable resources and not including any fossil fuels.
Due to its wood pulp and plant cellulose composition, in theory cellogreen is biodegradable under the correct conditions. Some recycling facilities accept biodegradable plastics for proper disposal, but many still don’t have these capabilities.
Cellulose diacetate and the plasticisers typically used have long been recognised as biodegradable under appropriate conditions (for example in soil burial tests and sewage sludge cultures).Source
In Canada, many recycling facilities do not have the capacity to recycle plant based plastics, though this might change in the future. However, a benefit of this plant based lamination is that the film, when separated from paperboard, also takes the adhesive and ink with it. This makes the paper materials underneath more easily recyclable!
During incineration, cellogreen only produces “carbon dioxide, water and a little non-toxic inorganic ash”. Additionally, for disposals in landfills, cellogreen doesn’t leach any harmful chemicals into the environment.
Currently, LeKAC does not offer cellogreen as a finish option for our packaging. In its place, we do offer an oil varnish coating which is water-based and 100% recyclable! We’re always looking for more eco-friendly alternatives, especially as the plastic ban approaches.