This guest blog is by Suzanne Haddon and Ashlee Smithson of RooCreate
 
Paper pulp packaging – what’s the deal? 
 
Paper pulp, molded pulp, wood pulp – what’s the deal? Research shows that the Molded Pulp  Packaging Market is likely to surpass $4.3 billion by 2026. Now is the time to look into the truly  sustainable resource that makes molded pulp products – Bagasse. With myriads of  misinformation, it is more important than ever to get the facts. Bagasse​ ​is a waste product of  sugarcane, that is, the fibre remaining from sugar processing​.
 
In the search for genuinely sustainable packaging, this is an opportunity that has gone  unnoticed. With ​approximately 80 cane-sugar producing countries, there is so much potential  to make better use of the fibrous residue known as Bagasse​.
 
We have access to a much more sustainable alternative. Sugarcane is a fast-growing staple  product, using waste from agriculture is a smarter option. This waste by-product is already  being produced, rather than specifically farming materials such as wood, which take many  years to grow. Bagasse also requires much less input to create the same amount of pulp compared to paper.
 
At RooCreate, we are reusing waste materials from the environment, so not to add MORE, and  utilise what is already there.

Bagasse is commonly used as a filler for paper or fibreboard. Bagasse is the eco-friendlier alternative to paper as well, it looks and feels like wood paper, but only takes 1 year to grow and harvest. This compared to paper, which can take up to 20 years to grow. 

This recyclable and compostable marvel is exactly what you need in your eco-packaging. 

Key benefits of Bagasse 

Using bagasse protects forests and its production requires fewer toxic chemicals. Less energy  and water is used to make the product, all this in turn plays an important role in helping  Australia achieve its Renewable Energy Target. 

Businesses need to utilise rapidly renewable sources. Bagasse uses lower energy-related emissions, which help to ​contribute to lowering global warming​. It requires less energy in the  manufacturing process because it is just ​the fibre remaining from sugar processing. 

Using it as a material for packaging removes the need for transporting the bagasse away. If bagasse were left to rot, it would break down and release greenhouse gases, particularly methane, which is 27 times more dangerous to the ozone than carbon dioxide. 

Importantly, ​it is durable and unaffected by extremes in temperature. Factors include: 

  • microwave and freezer safe,
  • can handle hot liquids up to 120 Degrees Centigrade
  • oven safe up to 220 Degrees Centigrade. 

Practical benefits include space savings, being nestable and stackable reduces storage costs  as much as 70%. Protection is another benefit, Bagasse gives superior shock and vibration cushioning. In addition, Bagasse can be engineered to your specifications, the option of  custom design is a great advantage. 

It offers price stability, minimal dependence on volatile price fluctuations of oil, gas and resins  gives you a long term price guarantee. It also comes at a lower cost than other protective packaging e.g. foams and thermoformed plastics. 

Products made from Bagasse do not need a PLA lining because it is naturally oil and leak  proof, making it both home compostable and industrially compostable. Bagasse is a great  composting material, so giving it a second life as packaging is great for the environment.  

Bagasse does not need any labels, like biodegradable, that tend to be misleading. It is both  home-compostable and industrially compostable. ​It is best case scenario that the products end up in your home-compost, but they could also end up in the recycling (as they look most similar to paper products), become incinerated and lastly end up in landfill. 

It is important to note that industrially composed materials are no better if they are also being  put into landfill. Home composting is where you can make a difference. Composting reduces  methane production (a major source of greenhouse gas), and provides a series of economic  and environmental co-benefits. Bagasse has many uses outside of packaging aswell, it is a major contributor in the bioenergy sector – accounting for over 60% of Australia’s dedicated bioenergy capacity. There are projects  also working towards using bagasse as a biomass for ethanol production. 

Give our ​Moulded Pulp Clamshell boxes​ a try today!

Blog post written by: Suzanne Haddon and Ashlee Smithson of RooCreate