What Is Done with Pulp Waste?

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  • Written By: Malcolm Tatum
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 21 May 2019
  • Copyright Protected:
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Pulp waste is the wood pulp that is left behind after the manufacture of paper. Over the years, this waste has been utilized in a number of different ways, effectively making what was once considered of no value into a viable material for the creation of different products. Making use of pulp waste as a recycled ingredient in a variety of everyday goods helps to reduce the stress on natural resources and has the additional benefit of preventing the pulp from ending up in landfills.

One of the more common examples of using pulp waste is as a material in the creation of artwork. Using machines designed to extract the fluids from the waste, the remaining product can be mixed with other compounds to produce interesting home accessories such as picture frames, vases, and even various designs of wall hangings. The pulp waste can also be used to create storage containers as well as reduced to a woven material that is ideal for the production of place mats and similar household items. Since the waste retains the porous nature of paper, adding inks and dyes to create the desired color combination for the piece is a simple task.


Another means of utilizing pulp waste is to create new paper products. This approach is often used in conjunction with what is known as recycled pulp. Using a process known as deinking, used paper products that are reduced to a pulp can be cleaned so that no traces of ink or dye remain. The deinked product is mixed with pulp waste created during the manufacture of new paper products, then processed to create recycled paper that can be used to create envelopes, notepads, and even sheets of recycled writing paper. The product can also be used to create shipping boxes or even used for printing newspapers and magazines. The exact blend of deinked product with the pulp waste depends on the type of product that is being manufactured, and the desired texture of consistency that is associated with that product.

Some studies have been done mixing pulp waste with cement, effectively allowing the waste to be included as an ingredient in the creation of concrete structures. While some limited application of this idea has occurred, the task of determining the best way to process the pulp waste and the effect on the integrity of the concrete is still under investigation. In the interim, recycling the waste to create new paper products serves as a credible means of making use of something that was once considered useless, and reducing environmental waste.



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