Quantification of vegetable oil in recycled paper, TAPPI JOURNAL September 2020

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Author: Yao Ntifafa, Maria Szajda-Lam, Ashok Ghosh, and Peter W. Hart
Quantification of vegetable oil in recycled paper, TAPPI JOU
ABSTRACT: Vegetable soybean oil is commonly used in cooking foods that are packaged in takeaway paper-board containers. Vegetable oil is hydrophobic, and in sufficiently high concentration, could interfere with interfiber bonding and result in paper strength loss. In order to quantify the effect of oil on the resulting paperboard strength, it is necessary to quantify the oil content in paper. A lab method was evaluated to determine the soybean oil content in paper. Handsheets were made with pulps previously treated with different proportions of vegetable oil. Pyrolysis gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (pyGCMS) was used to quantify the amount of oil left in the handsheets. The results revealed a strong correlation between the amount of oil applied to the initial pulp and the amount of oil left in the handsheets.In addition, the effect of vegetable oils on paper strength may be affected by the cooking process. Vegetable oil is known to degrade over time in the presence of oxygen, light, and temperature. The vegetable oil was put in an oven to imitate the oil lifecycle during a typical pizza cooking process. The cooked oil was then left at room temperature and not protected from air (oxygen) or from normal daylight. The heated, then cooled, oil was stored over a period of 13 weeks. During this time, samples of the aged oil were tested as part of a time-based degradation study of the cooked and cooled oil.

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