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Toilet Paper Commodity Chain
Transcript of Toilet Paper Commodity Chain
-Toilet paper is generally made from new or "virgin" paper, using a combination of softwood and hardwood trees. Softwood trees such as Southern pines and Douglas firs have long fibers that wrap around each other; this gives paper strength. Hardwood trees like gum, maple and oak have shorter fibers that make a softer paper. Toilet paper is generally a combination of approximately 70% hardwood and 30% softwood.
There are many toilet paper distributors around the world and many distributing companies in the country that help supply America with the toilet paper it needs
Image by Tom Mooring
How It Travels
Where to Find It
Pretty Much Everywhere
The average cost of a roll of toilet paper is $0.25 - $1.00
Other materials used in manufacture include water, chemicals for breaking down the trees into usable fiber, and bleaches.
Companies that make paper from recycled products use oxygen, ozone, sodium hydroxide, or peroxide to whiten the paper.
Virgin-paper manufacturers, however, often use chlorine-based bleaches (chlorine dioxide), which have been identified as a threat to the environment.
The Manufacturing Process
1. Trees arrive at the mill and are debarked, a process that removes the tree's outer layer while leaving as much wood on the tree as possible.
2. The debarked logs are chipped into a uniform size approximately 1 in x 1/4 in.
3. The batch of wood chips is then mixed with 10,000 gallons of cooking chemicals; the resultant slurry is sent to a 60-ft tall pressure cooker called a digester.
4. During the cooking, much of the moisture in the wood is evaporated. The mixture is reduced to cellulose fibers, lignin, and other substances.
5. The pulp goes through a multistage washer system that removes most of the lignin and the cooking chemicals. This fluid, called black liquor, is separated from the pulp, which goes on to the next stage of production.
6. The washed pulp is sent to the bleach plant where a multistage chemical process removes color from the fiber.
7. The pulp is mixed with water again to produce paper stock, a mixture that is 99.5% water and 0.5% fiber. The paper stock is sprayed between moving mesh screens, which allow much of the water to drain. This produces a wide sheet of matted fiber.
8. The mat is then transferred to a huge heated cylinder called a Yankee Dryer that presses and dries the paper.
9. Next, the paper is creped, a process that makes it very soft and gives it a slightly wrinkled look. During creping, the paper is scraped off the Yankee Dryer with a metal blade. This makes the sheets somewhat flexible but lowers their strength and thickness so that they virtually disintegrate when wet. The paper is then wound on jumbo reels.
10. The paper is then loaded onto converting machines that unwind, slit, and rewind it onto long thin cardboard tubing, making a paper log. The paper logs are then cut into rolls and wrapped packages.
-Toilet paper is part of the Free Trade Agreement
-The paper and paper products sector is defined by the Uruguay Round sectoral initiative on paper.
-Costa Rica is the leading export market for U.S. paper products, accounting for 26 percent of total U.S. paper exports to the region. \
-The United States, as a party to the Uruguay Round zero-for-zero sectoral agreement on paper, applies duty-free treatment on an MFN basis to these products.
-The pulp in certain paper products is created using ECF (Elemental Chlorine Free) purification methods. These methods are established by United States Environmental Protection Agency as a basic regulation for the pulp and paper industry.