Canadians Finally Discover Cellophane

Canadians discover cellophane after a winter sleep of 200 years.

The following article “The Hidden Cost of Convenience” was published on; it’s kind of love declaration for cellophane.

Replace plastic immediately with cardboard, glass, metal or cellophane. These materials were used by the food industry until plastics appeared in the 1900s.

Cellophane was invented in 1900; it is a thin, transparent sheet made of regenerated cellulose or plant material. It was the only packaging available until plastic came along, and is still in wide use.

Cellophane has low permeability to air, oils, greases, bacteria, and water which makes it useful for food packaging, and is ecologically sound.

We managed very well for years with cellophane which is made from wood and biodegradable in three to six months, much less than the hundreds of years for synthetic plastics to degrade.

Cellophane is common today as packaging for fruit and meat trays, gift wrap, cheese, baking, vegetables, fruit and consumer items. It can be used to wrap meats and poultry instead of plastic containers.

History of Cellophane

Cellophane was invented by Swiss chemist Jacques E. Brandenberger while employed by Blanchisserie et Teinturerie de Thaon. In 1900, inspired by seeing a wine spill on a restaurant’s tablecloth, he decided to create a cloth that could repel liquids rather than absorb them. His first step was to spray a waterproof coating onto fabric, and he opted to try viscose. The resultant coated fabric was far too stiff, but the clear film easily separated from the backing cloth, and he abandoned his original idea as the possibilities of the new material became apparent.



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