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Development of functional biogranulates for pet use

Grant number: 19/09012-8
Support Opportunities:Research Grants - Innovative Research in Small Business - PIPE
Duration: August 01, 2020 - April 30, 2021
Field of knowledge:Agronomical Sciences - Forestry Resources and Forestry Engineering - Technology and Use of Forest Products
Principal Investigator:Isabel Menezes de Bulhoes Gomes
Grantee:Isabel Menezes de Bulhoes Gomes
Host Company:Technological Solutions Integrated Ltda
CNAE: Fabricação de produtos de pastas celulósicas, papel, cartolina, papel-cartão e papelão ondulado não especificados anteriormente
City: Piracicaba
Pesquisadores principais:
Ademir Azevedo Marques
Associated researchers: Murillo Romani Ferreira
Associated scholarship(s):20/13112-5 - Development of functional biogranulates for pet use, BP.TT


Brazil is the second largest producer of pulp in the world, reaching 19.5 million tons in 2017. Preliminary results indicate a growth of 7.6% in 2018, with 21 million tons, according to the Brazilian Industry of Trees (IBÁ), which brings together the producers of pulp, paper, panels and wood floors and forests in the country. The pulp and paper production processes are characterized by generating losses of approximately 1% of fibers in the filtrates and effluents of the process. The fibers are removed in the initial phase of the effluents treatment in order to reduce the levels of chemical and biochemical oxygen demand, being removed in press filters composing the primary sludge; this material represents an environmental problem for the cellulosic pulp industry, that has been searching for potential applications for this material, besides the obvious use in the production of low quality paper. The application of primary sludge in paper production has as its main limitation the fact that fibers presents contaminants that impact its processing in paper machines as well as the high moisture content of approximately 70%, being a logistical constraint for transportation. In addition, the primary sludge for paper production competes in inferior conditions with paper chips for recycling. All these aspects make the primary sludge an important environmental problem for the pulp and paper production units. Considering only pulp production, the primary sludge generation in Brazil is around 195,000 tons per year. The search of unconventional use for fibrous materials and among them the primary sludge of the pulp industries is a strategic alternative to environmental, sustainability and circular economy aspects involving the pulp and paper segment in Brazil and in the world. The use of primary sludge to produce granules with controlled bulk density may lead to the production of a new product line from pulp for various uses, such as functional biogranulates for hygienic use by pets, with emphasis on felines and rodents. Preliminary tests performed by TSI indicate this potential. Thus, this project aims to define the pre-operational conditions to produce these functional biogranulates, from primary sludge of pulp and paper, from paper chips, from graphic papers residures and from pulp, as well as defining the characteristics of the new product. According to ABINPET (Brazilian Association of Pet Products Industry), the Brazilian population of domestic cats is of 22 million animals that consume approximately 1.35 million tons of sanitary granules ("cat's sand") annually, being the great majority from mineral origin (bentonite or silica). The production of this material represents a significant environmental impact intrinsic to mining activities and an environmental problem in urban centers, when discarding these products after being used by domestic animals. The development of a hygienic biogranulate for cats having as raw material the primary sludge of pulp and paper industrial units and/or paper from recycling and/or pulp, represents a clever solution for both the pulp and paper segment and for the pet segment, aligning the modern and important trends of sustainability and circularity. (AU)

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