Bio-degradable plastic as film


An investigation into the use of milk proteins as a natural material for the handcrafted production of objects.


I left a plastic see through bottle half filled with milk inside on a window ledge and then completely forgot about it. When I noticed it a week or so later, the milk had separated into solid and liquid, what might be described as the curd and the whey. I poured the whey away and had to cut open the plastic bottle to get the curd (see images below).

What remains is essentially a cheese, a cottage cheese. When you buy cottage cheese and you see it in the yellowy liquid that is essentially the yellow whey liquid.

What remains, as in here, where milk has been left to separate by its own accord, is seeing the form shaping of liquid becoming solid. What is happening is the emulsion that is milk, the complete of two parts to the point where they become one, have now separated back out.

After a week the milk curd had dried out turning from a rubbery substance into looking something like some weird rock hard mini omelette.

What is interesting is when the emulsion that is milk separates into two parts and you get the solid, the curd, which is also known casein, is essentially a protein, which as a material is a polymer material, it fits with various materials that are defined under the polymer banner. Namely plastic, glue and paint.

So in other words the solid that can be seen above can essentially be seen as a plastic, it can be used to create a form of glue, and it can be used to create paint as well as being the basis for cheese.

Casein paint is a fast-drying, water-soluble medium used by artists. Casein paint has been used since ancient Egyptian times as a form of tempera paint, and was widely used by commercial illustrators as the material of choice until the late 1960s when, with the advent of acrylic paint casein became less popular.

Casein-based glues, formulated from casein, water, hydrated lime and sodium hydroxide were popular for woodworking, including for aircraft. Casein glue is also used in transformer manufacturing (specifically transformer board) due to its oil permeability. While largely replaced with synthetic resins, casein-based glues still have a use in certain niche applications, such as laminating fireproof doors and the labeling of bottles.

Some of the earliest plastics were based on casein. In particular, the production of buttons. Fiber can be made from extruded casein.

Reticulation – a pattern or arrangement of interlacing lines resembling a net, a network of pipes used in irrigation and water supply.

Reticulation is the distortion of the emulsion layer of a film, caused when it is taken from one bath to another that has a dramatic difference in temperature. … Its emulsion is very soft and cant cope with sudden temperature changes.


Example of plastic made using potatoe starch that has been done as an experiment on a commercial level as part of a wide-ranging phase out of single use plastics.

The wrapping came as part of a members’ WHICH Magazine.

The WHICH Magazine, sent out by Advanced Direct Mail, was wrapped for the first time in compostable BIOPLAST® 300 for their November 2018 issue.

Bio-degradable starch plastic created out of a mix of glycerine, water, vinegar and starch