Papyrus Australia is the developer of a world-first technology that converts the waste trunk of the banana palm into alternatives to forest wood products to be used in the paper, packaging, furniture, building, construction and other industries.
The Papyrus process uses a renewable fibre source (i.e. banana tree trunk) that is fully sustainable, does not contribute to the destruction of natural or purpose-planted forests and does not consume any chemicals or water during manufacture. The process is also much more environmentally-friendly and has significantly lower production costs when compared to comparable products
Papyrus’ main objective is to license its technology to suitable entities that will establish banana veneer and banana fibre production factories in locations where banana is grown.
Papyrus was first conceived in 1995 by Ramy Azer when it was recognised that an increasingly stringent environmental and regulatory situation was becoming a significant issue facing the forest-based industry and products.
In particular, Azer wondered how, using conventional paper manufacturing methods, the paper industry could reduce the consumption of water, energy and chemical additives, as well as the amount of toxic effluent released into the environment.
In his younger age, Azer sold blank traditional papyrus in Europe, the old Egyptian paper made from sliced reeds, and soon realised that the demand for an environmental substitute to wood-based paper was greater than the supply.
With this experience and a strong environmental conscience, after completing a Mechanical Engineering degree (UniSA), Azer was awarded a scholarship by Adelaide University to investigate various manufacturing processes and alternative fibre sources that were readily available in Australia.
Following a detailed research and selection process, banana tree fibre was identified as a readily available all year round, renewable and abundant secondary raw material potentially suitable as an alternative fibre. Following an intensive R&D program, Papyrus developed an innovative manufacturing technology that converts the waste trunk of the banana palm into alternatives to forest wood products, with significant advantages over existing manufacturing methods and existing products.
Papyrus Australia Ltd successfully obtained a series of government grants to assist in the commercialisation of the Papyrus technology. Papyrus Australia (PPY) listed on the Australian Securities Exchange in 2005 with an initial issue of 20 million shares
The same year, Papyrus lodged a patent application in over 160 countries covering the Papyrus technology, manufacturing process, machinery and the products manufactured using this process. The patent was lodged in all countries where banana is grown and/or where significant machinery building capacity exists.
The first Papyrus patent was granted in Australia in 2007 and the Papyrus technologies are patent-protected in many countries around the world.