A plastic is a material that can change its shape. Many things are made of plastics, usually because making them the right shape is easy.
There are many types of plastic. Some can be shaped only when they are freshly made; then they become hard. Others are thermoplastic and can be softened by heating them. Due to their low cost, ease of manufacture, versatility, and imperviousness to water, plastics is used in a multitude of products of different scale, including paper clips and spacecraft. They have prevailed over traditional materials, such as wood, stone, horn and bone, leather, metal, glass, and ceramic, in some products previously left to natural materials. Plastic can release harmful chemicals into the surrounding soil, which can then seep into groundwater and also the ecosystem. This can cause serious harm to the species that drink the water and also burning of plastic in the open air, leads to environmental pollution due to the release of poisonous chemicals. The polluted air when inhaled by humans and animals affect their health and can cause respiratory problems. Plastics and their by-products are littering our cities, oceans, and waterways, and contributing to health problems in humans and animals.
Today there are only a few companies making use of hemp in the production of bio-plastics. Hemp by-products are often imported from countries such as China and France where growing licenses are more easily obtained. This can add sufficient costs to the production process, and has undoubtedly slowed research efforts into hemps use as a bio-plastic. Despite these difficulties, there are companies taking advantage of the diverse and favourable characteristics of the hemp plant, paving the way for more companies to learn and adapt on their success.
A recent technological advance with 100% biodegradable material made entirely from hemp. This new material has unique strength and technical qualities which have yet to be seen before, and this new material can be injection or blow-moulded into virtually any shape using existing moulds, including cosmetic containers, Frisbee golf discs, etc. Hemp bio-plastic is an affordable, natural fibres composite that can be used to replace oil-based materials. Biodegradable, recyclable and toxin-free – hemp bio-plastic can help address many pressing environmental issues.
Hemp plastics are made from the stalk of the plant. The stalk provides a high cellulose count which is required for the plastic construction, providing both strength and flexibility. Cellulose is the most plentiful organic polymer found on Earth, and plays a fundamental role in the cell walls of plants and many algae species. Biodegradable plastics take three to six months to decompose fully. That’s much quicker than synthetic counterparts that take several hundred years. Exactly how long a biodegradable bag takes to break down depends on various factors, such as temperature and the amount of moisture present.
Biodegradable plastics take three to six months to decompose fully. That’s much quicker than synthetic counterparts that take several hundred years. Exactly how long a biodegradable bag takes to break down depends on various factors, such as temperature and the amount of moisture present. But the bags aren’t always as environmentally friendly as they seem. They’re made from similar petrochemical-based materials to conventional plastic, only with compounds added that cause them to disintegrate gradually in the presence of light or oxygen. They often then degrade into sludge of toxic chemicals.
Hemp Plastic is an affordable bio based natural fibre composite to replace oil based raw materials. Both biodegradable and recyclable blends address global policies for CO2 reduction and oil dependence.
By – Assistant Professor -Dr. Ashish Uniyal
Department of Agriculture
Uttaranchal (P.G.) College Of Bio-Medical Sciences & Hospital