This article was published on ptonline.com
Within the last five years, I have blogged about two university teams—Harvard University’s Wyss Institute and the U.K.’s University of Nottingham—that have been working on the production of chitosan, a man-made bioplastic derived from the organic compound chitin, which is extracted from the shells of crustaceans like shrimp and lobster. Now, a team from Montreal’s McGill University has joined the ‘club’.
According to Audrey Moore, an associate professor of chemistry at McGill, it has been typically difficult to make chitosan durable or in mass quantities. This team’s ‘breakthrough’ patented process, however, involves making chitosan with a longer molecular chains, which makes it more robust.
This team primarily has been working with shrimp shells, which they grind into a fine powder. “Globally, every year we generate six to eight million tonnes of these kind of crustaceous waste, and we’re not using it for anything, really,” said Moore. She noted that the potential applications include straws, disposable cutlery, single-use plastic bags, food packaging and even materials for 3D printing.
However, the team is also looking into higher-end applications like biomedical applications. Their current focus: making the substance even more malleable before attempting to get it to market.
What is Circular Packaging? Watch Now!
- What are Bioplastics and Biopolymers?
- Bioplastics Brands
- Bioplastics Awards
- What is the Difference Between Biodegradable, Compostable and OXO Degradable?
- The History and Most Important Innovations of Bioplastics
- What are Drop-In Bioplastics?
- History of Cellophane
- The History of Elephant Grass Bioplastics
- Bioplastics Companies
- Top Bioplastics Producers
- Polylactic acid or polylactide (PLA)
- What is Bio-BDO?
- McDonalds and the Polystyrene Connections
- The Future of Polystyrene
- Bioplastic Feedstock 1st, 2nd and 3rd Generations
- Palm Oil and The Bioplastics Industry
This article was published on ptonline.com and written by LILLI MANOLIS SHERMAN