What Is Cellulose?

What Is Cellulose and why does it matter?

We have just announced that we are stocking an affordable and realistic alternative to plastic cellophane bags, and this article explains what cellulose is.

Cellulose is essentially, an organic compound. In nature, it gives plants their rigidity. When it was first isolated in 1838 by French chemist Anselme Payen, it actually paved the way for the Cellophane Bag, and the plastic equivelant which is used today – the Polypropylene Bag.

The polypropylene bag will be the one you see on the shelves in 99% of shops today, but most people still refer to it by it’s old name of Cellophane. I personally think that people prefer the name of Cellophane for this clear plastic film, and they simply do not know that the bag they think is Cellophane is actually Polypropylene.

Cellulose is mainly used to produce paperboard and paper. Smaller quantities are converted into a wide variety of derivative products such as cellophane and rayon. Conversion of cellulose from energy crops into biofuels such as cellulosic ethanol is under development as a renewable fuel source. Cellulose for industrial use is mainly obtained from wood pulp and cotton.

Source: wikipedia article on cellulose

Why did we stop using Cellulose?

Cost. The new polypropylene was first used commercially in 1957 and since then we have not looked back. It is today used to make chairs, nappies, jewellery and medical supplies to name but a few – and of course – clear bags.

After polyethylene, polypropylene is the most important plastic with revenues expected to exceed US$145 billion by 2019.
In 2013, the global market for polypropylene was about 55 million tonnes.

Source: Wikipedia article on Polypropylene

Why Are We Using Cellophane Again?

Because, again – cost! Whilst not as cheap as polypropylene, costs are coming down rapidly and it is far more affordable. Which means we can use Cellophane Bags again and know that it is compostable and biodegradable.

David Attenborough has a lot to be proud of, his highlighting of the issue in episodes of the BBC’s Blue Planet, has led to the current trend to find viable alternatives to plastic.

What Are Cellophane Bags?

Cellophane Bags are the Environmentally Friendly Alternative to clear polypropylene bags because they are made from natural, renewable resources such as wood pulp which then makes them both biodegradable and compostable.

In addition to being environmentally friendly, they are static free and can be heat sealed, stapled, or sticky-taped just like their plastic coutnerpart. Cellophane Bags will not biodegrade on the shelf. Biodegradation will only be initiated in a soil or waste-water environment where micro-organisms are present.

What Can You Use Cellophane Bags For?

Our bags are food-safe, so you can use just like the plastic versions, some uses include:

  • Fresh Fruit & vegetables
  • Biscuits & Bakery items
  • Dairy
  • Coffee and Tea
  • Crisp and Chips
  • Dried Foods
  • Confectionery

And much more..

These compostable bags are not prone to sweating – despite the fact it is a natural product – as they have a variable moisture permeability.

Biodegradable Cellophane Bags – video of degradation in nature

After 12 weeks this product degrades when placed in compost material.

NatureFlex™ Cellophane Bags

Our bags use the patented NatureFlex™ bio film. Read a summary about NatureFlex™ and a full technical specification document.

Buy Biodegradable Cellophane Bags Online:

Choose from the available sizes below.

  • Product Code: EGUS10
  • Product Code: EGUS13
  • Product Code: EGUS14
  • Product Code: EGUS15
  • Product Code: EGUS16
  • Product Code: EGUS17

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