A Question We Should All Know The Answer To…

What kind of trees are used as source material for the best quality paper and pulp?

You’d be surprised at how few people actually know the correct answer to this? That’s because it’s as inspecific and can differ depending on where you are in the world.

plantations-d-eucalyptus-combiner-sylviculture-et-genetique-pour-une-hausse-raisonnee-des-rendements_lightboxTo narrow it down a bit, the pulp and paper making industry uses both hard and soft woods. These are birch and aspen, grown on specifically grown plantations in temperate climates, also eucalyptus grown in the warmer climate of Portugal, Spain, Australia and South America.

Softwood, i.e. primarily pine and spruce, give the longer fibres that are needed to give paper strength. Hardwood fibres are much shorter, but give excellent important properties especially to printing stock.

To become an expert, we recommend that you read this really interesting tome about the paper manufacturing cycle. It’s aimed at the educated layman, so we guarantee that it’s not too much of a convoluted and intellectual headscratcher: http://www.paper.org.uk/information/factsheets/trees.pdf.

Picture sourced from Lightbox