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Quality Improvement of Argeli Paper (Edgeworthia Gardneri) Through Improved Technology

Quality Improvement of Argeli Paper (Edgeworthia Gardneri) Through Improved Technology

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Published by: khilendragurung on Dec 10, 2008
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Original paperQuality Improvement of Argeli Paper [
(Wall.) Meisn.]Through Improved Technology
Khilendra GurungHimalayan Bio Trade Pvt. Ltd.E-mail: khilendragurung@yahoo.com
A study on the quality improvement of Argeli [
(Wall.) Meisn.] paper by the introduction of improve paper making technology was carried out.Consultation on how to improve the quality of Argeli paper was carried out with paper manufacturers and exporters based in Kathmandu. Furthermore, various Argeli paper manufacturing companies of Kathmandu were visited. The observation was done visuallyand interviews were taken. The quality of Argeli papers manufactured by them was alsoanalyzed. Altogether two varieties of paper production techniques were tested for pureArgeli paper and mixed Argeli paper.The study revealed that almost all Argeli paper manufacturers adopted Japanesetechnology and few followed the traditional methods of paper making.Both the varieties of paper produced after adopting the improved technology were foundto improve in quality in terms of strength, thickness balance, maintaining weight, smoothsurface and low moisture absorption compare to the existing technology used for paper making.
Key words index:
, Argeli paper, mixed Argeli paper,Improve technology, Japanese technology.
Argeli [
 Edgeworthia gardneri
(Wall.) Meisn.] has a wide range of distribution in easternhilly regions, ranging between 1500m-3000m (HMG/N, 1976; Polunin and Stainton,1984; Kanpou Nepal, 2000; Press
et al.
2000; ANSAB, 2003 and Shrestha andChapagain, 2003). Besides, it is cultivated in community forests, in marginal and privatelands. Argeli is considered as an additional source of raw material for paper making, as ithas characteristic of quick regenerating potentiality in natural condition and oncultivation it provides the yield in short period of time. Moreover, the cultivationtechnique is easy to disseminate to farmers. So, Argeli can be self conserved in natureand can be utilized in a sustainable way for paper making.Various private and community owned enterprises have been making handmade paper from Argeli bark; either from Argeli alone or mixed with Lokta (
spp) bark.However, due to the lack of appropriate technology for paper making, handmade paper enterprises could not produce the quality paper from Argeli bark alone. Therefore, Argelifiber has been rarely used in paper making alone, even it has the potential market.So, this research attempts to target for quality improvement of Argeli paper by theintroduction of improve paper making technology.
The objectives of this study are are follows:
To identify the improve technology for Argeli paper production.
To find out the appropriate proportion of Argeli fiber to mix with Lokta fiber to produce Lokta-Argeli mixed paper.
Materials and MethodsConsultations with Experts
During the preliminary stage, the consultation on how to improve the quality of Argeli paper was carried out with paper manufacturers and exporters of Kathmandu. The work was carried out with the inputs from: Hand Made Paper Association, Oriental Colony,Everest Gateway Herbs P. Ltd., Jiri, Natural Paper Craft, Mandikhatar, TibetanHandmade Paper Industry, Kapan, Hand Made Paper P. Ltd., Kalanki, Om Paper Craft,Jorpati and Love Nepali Kagaj Udhyog, Kalopul.
Assessment of the Existing Technology for Argeli Paper Making
Various Argeli paper manufacturers of Kathmandu were visited. The observation wasdone visually and interviews were taken with the proprietors and workers involved in themanufacturing of Argeli paper. The samples of Argeli paper were also collected frommanufacturers. The quality of Argeli papers thus manufactured was also analyzed.
Improvement of Paper Quality
Altogether two varieties of paper production techniques were tested.
Pure Argeli Paper
Pure Argeli paper was produced with necessary improvements as according to theconsultation with paper experts. Argeli paper with different weights-5gm, 10 gm, 20gm,40gm and 60gm were produced adopting Japanese technology, except 5gm paper. The procedure followed during the paper making stages are given in annex- 1.
Mixed Argeli Paper
Mixed variety of Argeli paper; both containing Argeli and Lokta fiber was produced asaccording to the consultation with paper experts. Mixed paper with different weights-10gm, 20gm and 40gm were produced adopting traditional methods. The methodsfollowed during the paper making stage are given in annex- 2.
Results and Discussion
The study revealed that almost all Argeli paper manufacturers adopt Japanese technologyand few follow the traditional methods of paper making.The papers were found to be of less strength, thickness balance not maintained, low inweight than specified, rough surface, moisture absorption high (ink absorption) anddifficult for plate dyeing.
 3Both the varieties of paper produced after adopting the improved technology were foundto improve in quality in terms of strength, thickness balance, maintaining weight, smoothsurface, low moisture absorption and mixed paper were plate dyed.During the storage of Argeli paper, the following technology should be used to maintainthe quality of paper.1. Paper should be stored in room with cross ventilation.2. Store room should not leak water.3. Be sure that store room should not be the habitat of rodents.4. Paper should be placed in good quality wooden tools (not directly on the floor).5. Paper should be stored for at least 3 months before use for increasing strength and toreduce ink absorption.
1. Ash should be used in percentage basis with caustic soda for baking the Lokta/Argelifibers.2. Natural noorie (Inner bark of Gogan;
DC, Inner bark of Kaulo;
(Nees) Kosterm.
etc) should be tested.3. Fibers other than Lokta should be tested to mix with Argeli for improving the strength.4. Vegetable/Chemical dye on Argeli paper should be tested.5. Adopted appropriate technology should be transferred to the community enterprises.6. Market linkage activities should be conducted to promote Argeli paper produced by thecommunity enterprises.
I am grateful to Parbat Gurung for providing me this privilege to carry out the work. Iwould like to express my sincere gratitude to Asia Network for Sustainable Agricultureand Bioresources (ANSAB) for the financial support. I would also like to thank BibendraSingh, Sonam Sherpa, Ichchha B. Karki, Nima Sherpa, Bharat K. Shrestha, Suraj Hadaand Chandra B. Khatri for their kind consultation throughout the study period.
HMG/N. 1976.
 Medicinal Plants of Nepal
. HMG/N, Ministry of Forest and SoilConservation, Kathmandu.
Polunin, O and A Stainton. 1984.
. Oxford University Press.
Kanpou Nepal. 2000.
: In Nepali).Kanpou Nepal, Kathmandu.
Press, J R, K K Shrestha and D A Sutton. 2000.
 Annotated Checklist of the FloweringPlants of Nepal
. The Natural History Museum, London.
ANSAB. 2003.
Commercially Important Non Timber Forest Products (NTFPs) of  Nepal.
ANSAB, Kathmandu.
Shrestha, S K and K R Chapagain. 2003.
. District Forest Office, Solukhumbu.

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