Comparison and Analysis of Flexibility for Cutlery Made from Biobased/ Biodegradable and Petrochemical Materials
Biorenewable plastics can have the potential to reduce pollution, demand on landfills, and dependence on foreign petroleum caused by petroleum-based plastics. To determine the performance of biobased utensils compared to petrochemical based utensils, this study investigated 13 bio-based/biorenewable utensils and six petrochemical utensils in terms of weight, stiffness, and specific stiffness (stiffness/weight ratio). The Commercial Item Description (CID), which was created by the U.S. Government via the General Services Administration (GSA), is the current standard for testing utensils. The biobased products selected for this study were “commercial or industrial products (other than food or feed) that are composed, in whole, or in significant part, of biological products, renewable agricultural materials (including plant, animal, and marine materials), or forestry materials.” (USDA Bio Preferred Program, 2012). The results of this study show that the majority of biobased products exhibited similar strength and deflection under a given load as petrochemical products. This is the first comparison of this kind and it will allow designers and manufacturers to further optimize their products.
This article is published as B. Demmer, S. Devlin, R. Stephenson and D. Grewell, "Comparison and Analysis of Flexibility for Cutlery Made from Biobased/ Biodegradable and Petrochemical Materials," Journal of Technology, Management and Applied Engineering, 3, no. 1 (2017) 2-20.