Buraki LAB – graduation project

The work is the result of a series of studies aimed at finding a substitute for plastic using only natural resources to create new products that are part of nature’s cycle. As a primary resource agricultural waste was used as it provides substantial quantity. Furthermore as an organic plant material, they belong to renewable resources, and are therefore inexhaustible.

Sugar beetroot’s leaves are the biggest agricultural waste in Poland. Beet pulp is the by-product obtained during sugar refining. Both those substances were used as animal feed, but due to decreasing number in cattle there is an excess of this type of product. This was the starting point of the search for an alternative use for this raw materials.

Because the intention was to use only natural substances, and thus completely reject the chemical additives present in most manufacturing, the beetroot leaves and pulp were combined with only natural secondary materials.
With manufacturing techniques such as crushing, binding, pressing and the creation of bioplastic – they were transformed into paper, chipboards and other composites.

The materials can be used as an alternative to plastic which is causing huge environmental impact due to its durability and inability to decompose.
This project aims to highlight the fact that there are many everyday disposable items which are made from durable and imported materials, but they could (and should) be produced from local, non-toxic and biodegradable substances. It is also an attempt to demonstrate the potential of organic waste material which is currently useless.

The project is a finalist for make me! award.