The invention of plastic was a real revolution; however, the excessive production of single-use plastic and the inadequate management of plastic waste contribute to worsening the environmental emergency. Have you ever thought there might be a solution? The Composites and Hybrid Nanocomposites (GCNH) research group of the State University of Sao Paulo (UNESP) has invented a new type of plastic that is stronger than that made with petroleum: bioplastic.

This discovery could not only reduce the use of non-biodegradable plastic, but also the use of fossil fuels for the production of plastic. Let’s find out together!

The discovery of bioplastic

The study led to the creation of bioplastic starting from type B gelatin, a raw material easily found in retail stores. Abundant and inexpensive, type B gelatin, with the addition of cloister Na + nanoclay and a nanoemulsion based on black pepper essential oil, could be used to replace the plastic made with petroleum. The cloister Na + nanoclay is necessary to make the packaging more resistant, while the nanoemulsion based on black pepper essential oil gives a more pleasant smell to the package.

guy holding two reusable plastic containers
Environmental protection can start with you: choose bioplastic containers instead of plastic ones (Photo via Canva Pro)

The introduction of bioplastic could reduce the amount of non-biodegradable plastic and protect the packaging from pathogens. It would also reduce the use of fossil fuels used in the production of plastic.

Cover image via Canva Pro

Author: Stefania Angeli

Hi! My name is Stefania, and I’m a student of the degree course in “International Tourism and Leisure Industries” at the University of Bologna. My passion for traveling was sparkled by study trips and hiking in Trentino, where I was born and raised. Moreover, living in the US for one year has brought me closer to environmental sustainability issues, that were dear to my host family. My favorite travel? Interrail in Scandinavia, because it doesn’t take much to spend a memorable trip and contribute to the protection of the environment that surrounds us!
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