Burneside, UK — Cocoa waste materials are successfully being recycled into food packaging by James Cropper PLC’s Specialty Papers division in partnership with Barry Callebaut AG.
Certified for use as food packaging, the paper is made with unbleached cellulose fiber from sustainable crops combined with 10 percent cocoa husks. The repurposed, biodegradable wrapping is pigmented with cocoa, eliminating the use of dyes. The husks are delivered for processing in pulpable bags, allowing them to be used directly in paper production without further processing.
According to Cropper, each metric ton of dry cocoa beans processed results in 10 metric tons of cocoa husk waste.
“We had long been looking for ways to recycle cocoa husk,” says Herwig Bernaert, head of discovery programs and global projects at Barry Callebaut. He explains the company challenged students at the University of Arts London to find ways to recycle the shells for non-food products. Among the ideas generated were cocoa husk paper and cartons, and the company turned to Cropper to develop them.
The packaging is being introduced at 2013 Luxepack Monaco, where another Cropper product made from reclaimed coffee cup fibers is a finalist for the 2013 Luxe Pack in Green Award.