As even recycled paper is ultimately still originally made from wood, it’s good to see that one company has found something else to make paper from – wheat. Leftover wheat straw to be exact.
Natures Paper, an apostrophe-shy Australian firm, has made A4 and A3 sized paper that looks and feels like ‘normal’ paper but is made from wheat instead. I’ll leave it to them to explain how it’s done:
“The production method is quite simple; we harvest the wheat using the grain for traditional reasons such as flour, cereal etc. The mill uses the waste hull from wheat and rice to produce an organic fuel (BIO-FUEL). This is then burnt to generate heat which in turn is used to boil our self collected and recycled water. This water is used to not only clean our paper, but also produce steam to turn the turbines and generate 80% of the plant’s required Green Power.
“The straw, a by product from wheat production, is ground and then mixed to produce a quality paper pulp. The pulp is whitened using a sodium salt and oxygenisation process. This process is the only known commercial whitening process that is 100% environmental because we reuse the water many times. Unlike bleach or chlorine based systems whose two chemicals can only be used twice in the production process, before they have to be disposed of causing a risk to environmental areas from runoff, dumping and contamination of ground water resources.
“Once whitened the pulp is formed into paper. The waste from the production process is recycled and made into cardboard boxes to hold the paper.”