Knowledge for Development

Biodegradable packaging from cotton waste


Date: 27/02/2014


Biodegradable agricultural waste blends developed by Greg Holt, Agricultural Research Service (ARS), USA and colleagues at the USDA’s Cotton Production and Processing Research Unit in Texas, are being used by the packaging industry in a new process that 'grows' made-to-order packaging products to protect breakable goods during shipping. The proprietary process involves combining cotton gin waste and fungi inside a cast, resulting in a spongy-looking material similar in appearance to polystyrene foam. The custom-shaped end product provides a cost-effective 'green' alternative to extruded polystyrene foam packaging.    

(USDA ARS, 09/12/2013)   

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