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Bioplastic Cook Book

Bioplastics samples by Margaret Dunne, FabTextiles, Fab Lab Barcelona, 2018

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During her two month internship at FabTextiles and Materials lab, Margaret Dunne, a fiber scientist researcher studying at the College of Human Ecology at Cornell University, contributed to the research and development bioplastic experimentation. Her task during the internship was to master Bioplastic recipes, experiment and amplify the materials catalogue and publish the second open source book of FabTextiles lab called The Bioplastic Cook Book.
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After The Secret of Bioplastics, written by Clara Davis in 2017, which explained the history of bioplastics, The Bioplastic Cook Book focuses on recipes for making bioplastics. You can find precise instructions for making gelatine, agar-agar and corn-starch-based bioplastics. Dunne also offers bio-composite recipes using clay, burlap and hemp.
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Bioplastic cook book page by Margaret Dunne, FabTextiles, Fab Lab Barcelona, 2018

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In the Bioplastic Cook Book every single ingredient is biodegradable. They are made with biopolymers, plasticizers, solvents, and sometimes an additional, additive. The book opens with the indispensible basics anybody with a passing interest ought to know, required reading before any attempt to make bioplastic. At the end, a question is posed : are bioplastics harmless to the environment ? Margaret Dunne atteimpts to address this problem, exploring the carbon footprint that results from bioplastics.
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Bioplastic cook book page by Margaret Dunne, FabTextiles, Fab Lab Barcelona, 2018

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There is a link to the Bioplastic Cook Book at the end of this post. Below, some pictures of Margarette Dunne’s experiments.

Gelatine-based bioplastic sample by Margaret Dunne, FabTextiles, Fab Lab Barcelona, 2018

Agar-agar-based bioplastic sample by Margaret Dunne, FabTextiles, Fab Lab Barcelona, 2018

Bio-composite gelatine+clay sample by Margaret Dunne, FabTextiles, Fab Lab Barcelona, 2018

Bioplastic gelatine+spirulina sample by Margaret Dunne, FabTextiles, Fab Lab Barcelona, 2018

Bio-composite gelatine+burlap sample by Margaret Dunne, FabTextiles, Fab Lab Barcelona, 2018

Bioplastic gelatine foam sample by Margaret Dunne, FabTextiles, Fab Lab Barcelona, 2018

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Bioplastic cook book by Margaret Dunne, FabTextiles, Fab Lab Barcelona, 2018

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And if you’d like to know more about the general history of bioplastics, when, where and why they were created you can check our first published book:

 The Secrets of Bioplastics by Clara Davis here.

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BioBags collection

“Today, my driving motivation is to discover methods, materials that are ethically sound and sustainable.” Clara Davis

This BioBags collection, created by Clara Davis from the FabTextiles at Fab Lab Barcelona, is an environmental project about how to replace plastic bags and daily life packaging with biodegradable materials. A plastic bag takes about 450 years to disintegrate in nature. Those three BioBags, made with gelatin base bioplastic are completely biodegradable. It takes about one week to dissolve completely in the water.

Gelatin base bioplastic is a recipe with 100% natural ingredients : 78% of water, 16% of gelatin and 6% of glycerol. With this recipe you can cook a strong material. The difference between gelatin bioplastic and petroleum plastic is that bioplastic is not long-term resistant to heat (more than 40°) and water (more than one week). That’s why it’s so easy to recycle it.

For now the problem is still the price of creation, too high to considerate the BioBags collection just like simple packaging. It’s costing approximately 80 euros to create one BioBag : price of material, design, machine and time of work. You should know that gelatin base bioplastic takes about one week to dry. A long cooking process before starting to laser cut the BioBag.

The BioBag collection stay at the moment a project between Art & Design but with financial investment we can easily imagine a biodegradable industry coming in a near future.

-> Create your own Biobag

-> Print your bioplastic recipe

-> Learn more about bioplastic

-> Buy a BioBag at Lottozero shop online