The world has finally woken p to the brutalities inflicted on forests and trees for paper, among other uses. Digital alternatives and recycled paper have taken the Indian market by storm, but come with equally devastating affects. Recycled paper requires over 80 chemicals and bleaches to eb washed anew and cleaned of its past prints. This not only uses a lot of water but includes trees.
Kavya Madappa’s childhood is reminiscent of lolling hills and green landscapes with slivers of mist in Coorg, Karnataka, also known as the Scotland of India. It was the horrific realisation of the sheer cruelty meted out to the environment that bred Bluecat Paper that creates fabulous paper upcycled from the abused remnants of the fruit and oil industry.
Bluecat Paper procures agricultural waste, including coffee husk, lemongrass, banana stumps, Flax, Tea and Mulberry and elephant dung from Coorg. Until the dawn of the Industrial Revolution, paper was made from cotton fibre until the massacre of trees became a common menace. Bluecat Paper uses these ancient, environment-friendly methods to create paper with breathtaking texture and design.
Process: The items that include agricultural waste, elephant dung and cotton-bits from textile stores is brought to the factory. The cotton industry is infamous for wasting extra pieces or cloth cuts, which are colour-sorted before going into storage. The elephant dung is disinfected and sterilised before its fibres are pulled out to create the paper.
The waste cotton is colour-sorted and cut into fine shape before mixing with water and being beaten to an absolute pulp. The entire process is clean and makes use of only secondary and tertiary waste for its production. Cooking, Beating and Handmaking is the Bluecat Paper way.
Bluecat has a low tolerance for chemicals and usually allows the natural colour of the paper, and sometimes natural dyes, which enables them to recycle the water. An effluent treatment plant and the naturally handmade process allows for minimal usage of water. Caring hands collect the produced paper and air dry it, leaving little room for wastage of electricity. The greatest advantage of Bluecatpaper is that it causes no abuse and plunders no forests, creating unique, lovely paper that can be used to enhance and create art. The extra bits of paper that remain are often used for packaging, maintaining a zero-waste policy of its own.
Myth of Recycled Paper: The word recycle is trending among conscientious people around the globe but few know of the darker secrets that lurk behind this misused word. Even recycled paper was once a glorious tree that was felled for human greed. Paper is usually processed using over 80 different chemicals to give it the pristine white light that is forced out of naturally dark bark. Water wastage is another major cause for concern owing to the litres of water wasted to clean used paper of its previous ink. In conventional processes which are still largely used, that water turns a murky black and is not fit for reuse.
Even the environment to grow this recycled paper is toxic to the ecosystem, especially the smaller insects and animals that make it their home and displacement looms in the stale air when those trees are felled. Unlike other players in the industry, Bluecat paper ensures its paper is free of this cruelty and comes with 150 unique designs.
Paper Down: Kavya Madappa left years of working in the banking sector and started the Amanvana Spa Resort in Coorg that tries to embody clean and ethical principles. She was flabbergasted when she discovered the pain caused to nature for one piece of abused paper. That was the beginning of a company that has maintained fairness in its system of procurement and manufacturing to produce paper that is clean competition to an abusive existing industry.
The Mulberry Tree is a cheeky grower and is often cut to feed its wild mane of leaves to silk worms leaving behind bare branches that are perfect for paper making. The Banana stump is usually cropped and discarded after every harvest while tea and coffee husk are often discarded in rivers. Bluecatpaper and Kavya’s natural roots have saved many of these plants from a wasted end, a thanks that is imprinted in their paper.
Bee Saving Paper: Bluecatpaper recently tied up with Poland-based Anna Gadecka of Save The Bees to create some nutritional lemon grass paper to save bees. Many European countries witness these little creatures fall off in hundreds after working the entire day. The bee saving paper attempts to resuscitate these bees just enough to allow them the last leg of their journey back home. The paper is embedded with bee friendly flowering plans to encourage pollination. Bees are a crucial facet of the ecosystem and Bluecat is doing all it can to preserve and protect mother nature, naturally.
It is important to make a difference.
Why cut trees when you can create paper out of residual waste? Why are we not concerned about where our paper comes from?
Trees are certainly not as good a source for paper making as the cellulose rich residual waste that is piling up in various farms and landfills around us.
Bluecatpaper creates paper with love and responsibility.