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Let´s talk about plant-based paper on World Earth Day 2024! For a better carbon footprint, more climate resilience, biodiversity & circularity.

Do you know, that all Hahnemühle FIneArt Papers for artists and photographers are vegan, sustainable, free of plastic composites and 100% recyclable via the wastepaper cycle. Interested? Here are more facts on our increasing range of Natural Line papers. They are genuine innovations in the field of art, photography and commercial printing. And we haven’t just been acting sustainably for the last few years. Plant-based fibres have been an integral part of our manufacturing DNA for centuries…

General Facts on plant-based papers

  • Plant-based papers are a contribution to the worldwide transformation in resource conservation, biodiversity and sustainable consumption in planetary boundaries in accordance with the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)
  • Plant-based fibres substitute tree-based pulp to protect trees as important CO2 reservoirs
  • All plants produce considerable biomass with a quicker turnaround time which binds more CO2 and make them carbon neutral
  • Plants like Bamboo, Agave, Hemp and Sugar Cane grow quickly – in various regions of the earth, require no pesticides and little water for cultivation
  • They offer maximum ageing resistance and durability
Hahnemühle artist papers made from cotton rags, so called linters

Cotton rags as precious residues 

  • Plant-based fibres have been in Hahnemühle’s manufacturing DNA for centuries, as paper-making began in 1584 with textile waste – not with tree based fibres as the processing of tree fibres hadn’t been invented at this time
  • The so called cotton rags came from old clothing which where milled into tiny fibres for hand-made papers
  • We continue to use cotton rags – also known as linters – the soft and tiny little fibres of the cotton seed which are precious residues of the textile and nutrition industry

Hahnemühle has pioneered with Bamboo Papers in 2008

  • Bamboo is one of the fastest-growing plants on earth with up to 1m growth per day, without watering, fertilisers or pesticides
  • Bamboo reduces greenhouse gases significantly better than trees as it can absorb 5 times more CO2
  • It can be harvested every 5 years without damaging the plant as the stumps sprout and grow again
  • The undemanding plants dropping leaves throughout the year, it creates natural compost and improves degraded soil and its strong root system prevents earth erosions
Artist papers made of bamboo fibres for painting, drawing und digital fine art photo printing
Hemp fibres are great for Hahnemühle´s artist papers

Hemp has been rediscovered for paper production

  • Hemp plants deliver twice to four times more the amount of cellulose than trees
  • Hemp plants have an exceptionally high capacity to absorb and contain CO2, nearly four times higher than trees
  • The fast-growing plants are undemanding and grow almost everywhere without needing a special climate or soil, requires considerably less water compared to other plants, doesn’t need any pesticides, herbicides or fungicides
  • Hemp fibres are used in a variety of industries and all parts of the fibre are proceeded in a cascade manner

Agave, the undemanding plant, for papermaking

  • The nature of its photosynthesis is particularly interesting: at night it absorbs carbon dioxide, during the day, the plant can use the carbon dioxide necessary for photosynthesis
  • Other plants like corn or beans are cultivated between agaves which counteracts monocultures and improves the soil quality due to humification of harvest residues
  • No watering is required and these plants don’t need fertiliser or pesticides
  • The leaves of the agave can be harvested several times a year over a period of up to 15 years
Agave Fibres for Hahnemühle´s Natural Line Papers
Sweetest paper invention: Artist paper made of Sugar Cane

Sweetest paper innovation: Artist paper made of Sugar Cane

  • It’s the largest crop by production quantity worldwide for food and beverage industry or bioethanol as fuel with a versatile residue
  • The photosynthetic process of the Sugar Cane binds CO2 particularly effectively in the plants, which is not released even through processing
  • Processing Sugar Cane leaves fibrous plant residues called bagasse, which consists of 40-60% cellulose
  • Instead of burning fibrous plant residue, the material is processed into environmentally friendly products such as paper providing a secondary life to those fibres

Planet vs. Plastic – World Earth Day Motto 2024

Good to know: Hahnemühle´s PE-free Photo Paper for a world with less plastic

Hahnemühle is revolutionizing the Photo Paper market by launching the world´s first PE-free photo paper. A global market of 50 million square meter per year or the equivalent of wrapping Paris’ Arc de Triumph 2000 times. Hahnemühle Sustainable Photo Satin is the alternative to PE-based inkjet photo papers without bound plastic components. The newly developed paper with its bio-based inkjet barrier coating is free of plastic and 100% recyclable via the wastepaper cycle. 

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