Composite materials have long been associated with the jewellery making industry. With metals like gold, being too soft in its pure state, they needed to be mixed with composites that would strengthen it and let it last longer.
The same method can be applied to the material for jewellery packaging. In this week’s “Material Monday: Series 1” entry Seetal Solanki of Ma-tt-er discusses Zelfo, a packaging alternative made from engineered lignocellulosic natural content that is bound with the residue and remains of the agricultural waste, post-consumer waste and industrial waste to create captivating surfaces.
The agricultural waste fibres include banana, coconut (coir), palm, pineapple, seaweed, bamboo, sawdust, cotton waste, bagasse, hemp hurds and waste, wood chips, reeds and grasses. Industrial waste sources include de-inking sludge, paper and board mill waste fibre streams, offcut cellulose and textiles. Post-consumer sources come from recycled paper and packaging materials. Processed cellulose sources come from bleached and unbleached wood and non-wood pulps.
Where appropriate, the processed fibres can be combined with mineral fillers, synthetic fibres as well as with natural binders. They can also be used to extend synthetic binders thus making the final product more sustainable and completely biodegradable.
These fibres have inherent properties, which allow them to act as naturally occurring bio-based binders. This enables the material to be modified by the end-user, which encourages a more bespoke, and industry specific packaging products. This property can be beneficial for the jewellery packaging sector due to its scalable production and malleability to create a variety of shapes.
Other qualities that are associated with Zelfo packaging are:
- Formable: 3D Housings/Cases, 2D Sheets/Panels
- Finish: Textured or smooth; unfinished, matte or gloss surface.
- Colour: Untreated, surface-treated or pigmented throughout; both neutral and vibrant tones are possible as natural pigments can be added to achieve consistently coloured surfaces as brown, ochre, black, white, green, blue, red, yellow, violet
- Surface treatments: foiling, heat moulded decoration, embossing, debossing can all be applied onto this material for logos or any branding.
Jewellery often conjures up a very luxurious aesthetic due to its elegant design and preciousness. Zelfo can be considered a material that corresponds and adds to the story of these products through its natural yet palatial surfaces. With its deceptively polished finish, it gives no distinct indication that the material has been created from waste materials, making it an incredibly environmentally friendly packaging solution.
Annotating micro and macro trends across packaging industry that significantly push towards circular economy and sustainable alternatives, there has never been a better time on the market to consider materials like Zelfo for your jewellery packaging solution.
If you would like to find out more how sustainable packaging solutions could add to the material story of your brand, or you would simply like to participate in our event concluding “Material Monday: Series 1”, please do not hesitate to get in touch.