New cling wrap may create secondary market for canola

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In Canada, University of Alberta researcher Marleny Saldaña has created a biodegradable cling wrap using cellulose nanofibers from canola straw.

“We have a huge problem with the millions of tonnes of plastics that are produced; landfilling isn’t possible anymore as much of it winds up in our oceans, so we need to look for new alternatives to produce these types of materials for a wide range of applications,” Saldaña tells Phys.org.

The “cling wrap” is twelve times stronger than a previous iteration made with cassava starch and provides a market for the fibrous stalk byproduct left over from canola oil processing.  The canola industry employs a quarter of a million Canadians and creates $26.7 billion in revenue. China was previously the largest buyer of Canadian-grown canola but has since banned imports amid a trade war.