FAQ- Frequently Asked Questions
1.) Why is sugarcane paper an ecologically valuable product?
Sugarcane paper is made exclusively from the waste that remains from processing sugarcane in the sugar mill. This waste is known as bagasse. The bagasse is then upcycled into high quality papers.
2.) What does your product mean for environmental protection?
We offer completely TREE-FREE paper. This is new in Europe and a relief for forests, which are under a lot of pressure.
3.) Is TREE-FREE paper more sustainable than paper made from FSC-certified wood?
We think the FSC and also the PEFC certifications, are credible international stamps for the global forestry industry. But they are not without controversy. Greenpeace, a founding member of the "Forest Stewardship Council", FSC, has left the group until further notice since a small proportion of the FSC wood has been identified to come from natural forests and there is some lack of transparency. This meant problems with Russia and the Congo Basin. Comparable discussions also arise elsewhere. As a rule, the FSC certificate is a quality feature. However, what a better paper certification than one that does not use trees at all.
4.) How do you rate recycled paper? Isn't that an excellent product?
Of course, we believe that recycling is a good thing. We also recycle the waste of the sugar process. The advantage of CALIMA® paper is that we process a fresh fiber and thus manufacture a new and food-grade paper. When recycling waste paper, the printing inks have to be removed, which consumes water and energy, and color chemicals are added to make the quality homogeneous. After these processes, the recycled paper is still not food grade. Sometimes fresh wood fibers are added to give the paper resistance. Also, some of the recycled papers come with the "Blue Angel" certificate of 100% recycled paper. It is important to know that recycled papers use mostly bleached pulp paper.
5.) Can sugarcane paper be recycled?
The sugarcane paper can be recycled up to seven times, like other virgin fiber papers. The CALIMA paper is made of fresh virgin fibers and works perfectly in the German or other country paper recycling system. To ensure that the paper quality of recycled paper does not permanently decrease, fresh fibers from wood pulp or sugarcane pulp must be added to the waste paper again and again. By recycling our CALIMA paper, you ensure that TREE-FREE fresh fibers enhance the quality of the waste paper.
6.) Why should I use Colombian paper?
Our Colombian sugarcane paper is ecologically a fantastic product. Using it here in Germany also means creating jobs in an economically weaker country and thereby protecting the rainforest better. Second, you don't have to cut trees to get a great paper product, saving water and energy. Thirdly, with regards to transportation, many of the papers that we consume here in Germany come from far away countries such as China and Brasil. The pulp for the paper manufactured in Germany often does not come from our local suppliers since the wood pulp is produced and imported on a large scale. The transportation of the CALIMA® paper from Colombia to Germany does not emit more CO2 than, for example, to transport it from Scandinavia to Germany on a truck, where many FSC-certified products come from.
7.) Is rainforest cleared to grow sugarcane?
We can rule out that new fields will be planted with sugarcane by clearing forests. We are very sorry that in Brazil the rainforest is being cut down to increase agricultural land because of political decisions. On the other hand, we are currently promoting to reforestation in a zone in the valley where the CALIMA® paper obtains its raw material. The forest in the area is called Tropical Dryforest, which is different than the more commonly known Tropical Rainforest, but equally important for biodiversity and species preservation, both for fauna and flora.
8.) Why is there white CALIMA® paper and how is it bleached?
The white paper brand developed was requested by customers in Europe. For this, the natural sugarcane pulp is bleached in an chlorine-free process, ECF.
9.) Isn't 'TREE FREE' just another word for 'Wood Free'?
No, 'Wood-Free' paper is the one manufactured from chemical pulp from trees. In the chemical process, the lignin is separated from the cellulose, and therefore it is not named wood anymore. On the other hand, “TREE-FREE” means that no cellulose comes from trees, not even from dead wood, "weak" forest wood, or sawn raw materials.
10.) How will your company develop? What are your goals?
CALIMA GmbH is a passionate supplier for a Greener World, investing in research and development for new products and services that the market requires for current and future environmental and social challenges. We like to do it in a transparent, reliable, fast, and honest manner helping in the best possible way to improve the world ecology.