Meanwhile, in "a pox on all things plastic" news...

Researchers in Ontario say they've developed a biodegradable material made from hemp that could be used for product packaging.

Meanwhile, in "a pox on all things plastic" news...
SEM cross-section images of tensile specimen fracture surfaces: (A) PBFSu40 without hemp; (B) PBFSu40 with 10 wt% hemp; (C) PBFSe40 without hemp; (D) PBFSe40 with 10 wt% hemp. Red arrows point to the areas in the composite polymer samples containing hemp fibers. Credit: Journal of Polymer Science (2023). DOI: 10.1002/pol.20230060

Researchers at Western University in Kingston, Ontario have worked with industry partner CTK Bio Canada to develop a new biodegradable, hemp-based material that they say could serve as a sustainable substitute for product packaging needs.

As this article points out, hemp is a sustainable agricultural crop that requires minimal resources to grow and is also a waste product of Canada's thriving cannabis industry, making it a free resource that would otherwise be destined for a compost heap or the landfill. And according to one of the researchers quoted in the article, hemp is stronger and more malleable than a lot of the other biomaterials currently being explored as a substitute for plastic.

Stories like this make me wonder if there'll be just one kind of material that ends up replacing plastic in all of its myriad forms or many. (My guess is many.)

Read the full story here.

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