A German company called Bio-lutions is offering an alternative to single-use plastic and other destructive forms of packaging with a material made from agricultural waste. The eco-friendly food containers are made from the discarded mulberry leaves produced on at silk farms—and it was at the suggestion of the farmers. City Lab reports that co-founder Kurian Mathew got a call from a farmer near Bangalore who offered him the material that would otherwise go in the garbage.
“Every month, tons of mulberry leaves are left over from our pruned plants,” he said. “Would you like to use them at your factory?”
Soon they received sacks full of the dead leaves.
Mulberry leaves aren't the only material Bio-lutions is used to working with, but they do focus on biodegradable agricultural waste. The leaves were shredded, then left out to dry outside of the company's small factory. After that they were cleaned and put through Bio-lutions patented machinery, which turns them into fibers that are pulverized into a pulp with a centrifuge. The pulp is put into a press that forms it into sheets, in various shapes that hold fruits and vegetables.