Pulp and Paper Canada

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Kemira, Danimer Scientific to develop biodegradable barrier coating for paper


December 8, 2020
By P&PC Staff

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Chemical supplier Kemira has partnered with Danimer Scientific to develop biodegradable aqueous barrier coatings for more sustainable paper and board products.

Danimer Scientific, a developer and manufacturer of biodegradable materials, and Kemira aim to manufacture coatings for limited commercial applications in 2021 before exploring broader production options.

Coating in a paper or board product such as a coffee cup forms a barrier to keep moisture and grease from leaking through the cup material.

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As demand for sustainable paper and board products increases, this coating and surface treatment will ensure paper and board items are fully biodegradable in soil and water.

Danimer Scientific’s biopolymer, Nodax (made from polyhydroxyalkanoate, or PHA), is renewably sourced from the seeds of plants, such as canola and soy, and is 100 per cent bio-based.

The majority of paper and board products, from cups to food packaging, are currently coated with fossil fuel-based polyethylene, which hinders the recyclability of the products and creates plastic waste.

“PHA is a proven biodegradable alternative to fossil fuel-based materials,” says John Moore, senior vice-president of business development at Danimer Scientific. “Partnering with Kemira will enable us to expand to paper applications, delivering a repulpable and biodegradable material without sacrificing the product quality that brands and consumers expect.”