News International Sugar Journal

Producing bioplastics from variety of crop residues [Registered]

Researchers at the Italian Institute of Technology have been successful in exploiting cellulosic feedstocks to produce bioplastics. Athanassia Athanassiou and her colleagues turned to an organic acid trifluoroacetic acid (TFA) to digest cellulose. They mixed the acid with parsley and spinach stems, and husks from rice and cocoa pods. Then, they poured the resulting solutions into lab dishes. When tested, the films that formed showed a promising range of traits from brittle and rigid to soft and stretchable – similar to commercial petroleum based plastics. Findings are reported in the journal Macromolecules (2014, 47 (15) : 5135-5143).…

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