The process of making plastic buttons from milk involves using a material known as casein, which is a protein found in milk. Here’s a simplified explanation of the process:
Milk is initially separated into curds (casein) and whey. This is typically done by adding an acid, like vinegar, to the milk.
The curds, which contain casein, are then separated from the liquid whey.
The casein is processed and mixed with other natural ingredients like lime and dyes to create a moldable substance.
The resulting substance is then molded into the desired button shape using heat and pressure.
The molded buttons are polished and finished to achieve the desired appearance and texture.
The casein-based plastic created from milk is biodegradable, making it a more environmentally friendly alternative to traditional petroleum-based plastics. This process was historically used during shortages of traditional plastics, such as during World War II, and has seen occasional resurgence in interest as part of sustainable and eco-friendly practices.