CJ Cheiljedang Creates New Paper Coating Technique Using Biodegradable Plastic
- 27-Nov-2023 6:58 PM
- Journalist: Francis Stokes
CJ CheilJedang, a pivotal subsidiary within South Korea's expansive CJ Group, has achieved a groundbreaking milestone by introducing the world's inaugural biodegradable paper coating technology. This innovative process utilizes degradable plastic materials derived from food waste, specifically known as "polyhydroxyalkanoates" (PHAs). The application of this pioneering technique extends to paper packaging, including items such as paper cups, cup noodles, and rice containers.
PHAs are naturally produced by bacteria during the fermentation of sugar or lipids, encompassing fats, oils, and waxes. The primary purpose of PHAs in nature is to store carbon and energy. These versatile compounds can be combined with other monomers to generate diverse types of bioplastics designed to decompose over time. Notably, PHAs exhibit complete biodegradability, even in challenging environments such as seawater.
On November 27, CJ CheilJedang announced that it had successfully developed compostable coating technology boasting durability and heat resistance comparable to conventional materials like polypropylene and polyethylene. This innovative coating method is adaptable to a range of food packaging applications, especially those necessitating exposure to hot water or microwave cooking. The first tangible application of this biodegradable coating technology is slated for the paper containers of Hetbahn Cupbahn, an instant rice dish tailored for microwave use, with a targeted launch in the first half of 2024.
The foray into biodegradable technology is part of CJ Cheiljedang's broader commitment to white biotechnology, a field leveraging living cells to synthesize easily degradable products. In April 2021, the food manufacturing giant initiated a partnership with SKC, a prominent manufacturer specializing in polyester film and chemical materials. Together, they embarked on the production of a flexible and durable biodegradable plastic material, marking a significant stride in sustainable materials innovation.
The development of this biodegradable paper coating technology not only addresses the escalating concerns surrounding environmental sustainability but also positions CJ Cheiljedang as a trailblazer in the integration of eco-friendly solutions within the food packaging industry. The prospect of utilizing PHAs for paper packaging, particularly in applications involving hot liquids and microwave heating, reflects a strategic move towards a more sustainable and environmentally conscious future.
As the new coating technology sets the stage for its inaugural application in Hetbahn Cupbahn containers, it signals the imminent integration of eco-friendly alternatives into mainstream consumer products. This milestone not only aligns with CJ Cheiljedang's commitment to environmental responsibility but also contributes to the global efforts aimed at reducing the environmental impact of plastic waste.