Orthex, a manufacturer of durable household goods, and Woodly, a manufacturer of pulp-based materials, are set to bring durable, transparent lunch and kitchen boxes made of wood-based plastics into selected retail shops in 2021. Instead of fossil plastics, the boxes are made of the wood-based Woodly material.
Woodly is a material with a completely new chemical composition, manufactured out of wood pulp instead of oil-based raw materials or even wood-based oils.
The joint project by Orthex and Woodly is ground-breaking. The wood-based plastic by Woodly has so far been used for manufacturing transparent product packaging and films.
The Woodly material has the conventional good properties of plastics: thermoplastic, transparency and durability. ‘What makes the material particularly interesting to us is that it is transparent, even though the raw material is bio-based,’ says Alexander Rosenlew, CEO of Orthex.
‘As regards its properties, Woodly is a plastic, so in principle, it can be used in the way of plastics,’ says Jaakko Kaminen, CEO of Woodly.
Like plastics, Woodly is pliable and flexible in the manufacturing process. The same machines can be used to make the boxes as are used for conventional plastics, which means that no extra investments are needed.
The starting point of the project was that the boxes should be dishwasher- and microwave-proof in the way of customary plastic items. As far as this is concerned, the tests have not yet been completed.
Thanks to being made of a renewable raw material, Woodly is a carbon-neutral material. After use, products made of Woodly can be recycled in the normal way as plastics.
The main ingredient of the material is derived from certified coniferous forests managed according to internationally approved principles of sustainability. The name of the pulp supplier or its country of origin have not been divulged.
‘In any case, our supplier holds both the FSC and the PEFC certificates,’ says Kaminen.
Woodly aims at developing a globally known material brand. ‘This requires that Woodly can be launched with companies with a high sense of social responsibility and the capability of commercialising new innovations,’ says Kaminen.
‘The Orthex group is aiming at carbon-neutrality in its production by 2030, which is a fairly ambitious goal for a company chiefly utilising plastics. Our cooperation with Woodly is a step towards this goal,’ says Rosenlew.
The products are manufactured in Finland.