European collaboration leads to toilet paper made out of milk

13th of December 2016
European collaboration leads to toilet paper made out of milk

A premium-priced toilet roll made from waste milk will be hitting Italian supermarket shelves this winter.

Carezza di Latte - which translates as "milk caress" - is a collaboration between German fabric innovator Qmilk and Italian tissue company Lucart. The product will be made from waste milk that cannot be sold, perhaps because a cow has been unwell or similar reasons.

Qmilk currently manufactures hypoallergenic cloth woven from fibres derived from a protein in soured milk. Founder and microbiologist Anke Domaske came up with the idea when seeking to provide her cancer-suffering stepfather with non-chemically treated clothing that would support his weakened immune system. Some standard textiles are said to contain potentially toxic chemicals including hormone disruptors and heavy metals.

"When milk turns sour, you have whey at the bottom and a solid at the top which we dry to a protein powder," said Domaske. "Then we put this in a sort of noodle machine and add water to make a dough. Then we work it through to produce fine fibres."

The company currently uses 1,000 tonnes of waste milk per year which is sourced from around half a dozen local farms. The company has adapted the technology to produce non-woven fibres made from milk waste- and Lucart has turned these into milk-based loo rolls.

"It's dermatologically very good," says Domaske. "It should be okay for people with allergies, even those with lactose intolerance because even though you can technically eat it there's no lactose inside it."


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