Harvest Paper is made using waste straw product from wheat harvest which would otherwise have been burnt or used as non-nutritional cattle feed. This has environmental and social economic benefits.
The Story - How We Got Here
- Increased demand from developing world economies for A4 office paper has created a seller's market, with demand outstripping supply, causing an increase in the cost of raw materials such as pulp.
- Passed on to end user as price increases for standard 80gsm paper.
- UK market perceives this as simply 'yet another price increase'.
- This translates to a lower quality paper, with as low as 65gsm common in the UK market – spun as environmental.
- Unhappy with lower quality paper or price increases, we were keen to identify a way that we could offer the same quality paper at a price that would only increase in proportion to inflation.
- Established market in Middle East, North America and Australasia.
Existing Choices - Recycled and Virgin
- UK market has traditionally had a choice of recycled paper or paper from a sustainable source.
- Carbon footprint of transportation is high, there are no recycled mills for office cut paper in the UK, the closest mill producing a recycled sheet is in Austria.
- Merely extending the life of the paper is not sustainable, paper can only be recycled up to four times.
- The business model for a recycled mill was inefficient, with yield falling and price dictated by the market. Mills are unable to command a price that makes economic sense to paper manufacturers in the UK.
- Paper from a sustainable source – High carbon use (energy) to remove lignins (delignification stage).
- Most standard stock office cut paper uses either wood or pulp from developing countries.
Harvest Paper Benefits - The Third Choice
- Produced in the Punjab – One of the most fertile regions on the planet.
- Paper made using waste straw product from the wheat harvest.
- Traditionally, straw would have been burnt or used as non-nutritional cattle food.
- Delignification process mainly uses biofuels such as husk or animal waste pellets.
- Black liquor, a bi-product of Oxygen delignification process, is used as fuel for whitening stage of process.
- Latest Metso, 'Elemental Chlorine Free' (ECF) technology used during whitening stage.
- Paper Composition – 60% agricultural waste, 9% Moisture, 17% Pigment and Fillers, 14% wood free chemical pulp (strengthening fibre).
- Lignin needs to be removed from the raw material to create a pulp that can be used to make paper.
- Average softwood consists of about 40% lignin – wheat straw consists of 2% lignin.
- Massive reduction in energy required at delignification stage.
- Bio-fuels and the bi-products from production are used as energy sources.
- Latest ECF reduces impact of bi-products.
- Soda process using wheat straw eradicates sulphur emissions.
- Reduction in greenhouse gasses – Wheat straw no longer being stubble burnt.
- Wheat grown for maximum efficiency (yield) has positive impact on the environment through photosynthesis.
- Low carbon footprint of transportation when compared to recycled paper – Wheat sourced from fields within a 40km radius of the mill.
- Elements of production are shared with the production of food products, minimising our carbon footprint.
- Prevents further deforestation, protecting threatened habitats and wildlife.
Social Economic Benefit
- Agricultural crops can continue to be grown in countries where food production is an issue.
- Allows farmers in developing countries to generate a second income.
- Our harvest paper research improves local farming methods and technologies.
- Improved education through annual learning events.
- Investment in mill supports crucial local infrastructure such as hospitals and schools.
- There has been an improvement in working conditions and policy – Such as the creation of women's rights groups and Kaizen systems, etc.
In 2014 Bates Office will launch an extended Harvest product range, to complement our already successful A4 and A3 papers.
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Complete the form below to request a free sample of Harvest wood free paper