Synthesis of Renewable and Cost-Effective Bioplastic from Apple Waste: Physicochemical and Biodegradability Studies

Nicholas Yung Li Loh, Hui Ying Pang, Wan Ting Tee, Billie Yan Zhang Hiew, Svenja Hanson, Siewhui Chong, Suchithra Thangalazhy-Gopakumar, Suyin Gan, Lai Yee Lee*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

The production and disposal of plastics have become a major global concern owing to its non-biodegradable properties in the environment. The recycling of apple biowaste as a value-added bioplastic precursor offers a solution to this waste disposal issue. In this study, readily available apple waste was converted into bioplastic through the delignification of cellulose cum reinforcement by nanocrystalline cellulose (NCC) extracted from the biowaste. The results indicated that the inclusion of apple waste and delignification effect had improved the bioplastic storage modulus (0.42–4.23 MPa) and brittleness in terms of hardness (5.22–0.51 kg). Morphological analysis revealed that the NCC had an average size of 70 nm and was homogeneously blended within the bioplastic matrix. The integration of the apple waste into the bioplastic promoted biodegradability, evident from the maximum weight loss of 58.1% after 4 weeks of biodegradation test, thus presenting a novel and alternative biodegradable plastic. The obtained results support apple waste as a potential filler for bioplastic development in food packaging, medical implants, 3D printing and water bottles. Graphical Abstract: [Figure not available: see fulltext.].

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)3235–3252
Number of pages18
JournalWaste and Biomass Valorization
Volume14
Issue number10
Early online date20 Dec 2022
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2023

Keywords

  • Agricultural biowaste
  • Biodegradable
  • Bioplastic
  • Ecologically friendly
  • Nanocrystalline cellulose

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Waste Management and Disposal

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