Korean scientists have developed eco-friendly paper straws that are 100 per cent biodegradable, perform better than conventional paper straws, and can be easily mass-produced.
These paper straws can gradually become a substitute for plastic paper. Also, the paper straws that are currently available in the market are not entirely made of paper.
Straws made with 100 per cent paper become too soggy when they come in contact with liquids and cannot function as straws.
Accordingly, their surfaces have to be coated, according to a researched article published in the journal Advanced Science.
Scientists have found that these eco-friendly paper straws maintain their physical integrity in both cold drinks and hot drinks.
They also found that the straws did not become soggy when used to stir various beverages such as water, tea, carbonated drinks, milk, and other drinks containing lipids, or upon prolonged contact with liquids.
Scientists were from the Korea Research Institute of Chemical Technologysynthesised. They were being praised for coming up with a well-known biodegradable plastic, polybutylene succinate (PBS), by adding a small number of cellulose nanocrystals to create a coating material.
The added cellulose nanocrystals are the same material as the main component of paper, and this allows the biodegradable plastic to firmly attach to the paper surface during the coating process.
The new paper straws do not become soggy easily or cause bubble formation in carbonated drinks because the coating material uniformly and strongly covers the surface of the straws, the researchers said.
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