Hemp pectin waste left from CBD extraction is getting a new look as a strengthener for plywood and other wood composites.
Virginia Tech reports that researchers at its College of Natural Resources and Environment looked at using the waste pectin, a jelly-like material that exists in the cell walls of most plants, as a modifying agent in the production of wood-based materials.
Chip Frazier, director of the Wood-Based Composites Center at Virginia Tech, said the hemp industry offers new options for alternative biological materials.
“Currently, the industry generates large quantities of solvent-extracted hemp flower, and all of that biomass is treated as waste, so it couldn’t be cheaper for us as a raw material,” Frazier said.
Undergraduate researcher Emilie Kohler said that hemp pectin shows promise, though the research results are not yet concluded.
“Not a lot of research has been done on hemp, and this could be the start of something important,” she said.