German project highlights hemp as bio material

By Charlotte Eyre
HÜRTH, GERMANY (Oct. 23, 10:45 a.m. ET) — Manufacturers of bioplastics can resolve the problem of dosing natural fibers by using hemp pellets, according to a new Germany-based project led by the Nova Institut.
The Nova Institut’s Michael Carus said the project was set up because natural fibers cannot be easily fed and dosed in the plastic process, as they stick together. The partners decided on hemp as a material because only flax and hemp are grown as fiber crops in the EU.
Professor Jörg Müssig (HS Bremen, Bionik) and his team tested the properties of the hemp fibers from German manufacturer BaFa before and after pelletization, within the granulate and in the end product, as well as checking the mechanical values of test specimens and end products.
Carus said that as well as solving dispensing problems, hemp can also improve mechanical properties when used in a biopolymer.
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