Meet the Paper Bag Backpack

Paper bags are becoming increasingly popular among the eco-conscious, but a certain problem has held cyclists back from using them – they’re simply not very bike-friendly. Bikes don’t come with the built-in baskets and crossbar frames which they used to, so paper bags – which often come very simply without handles – have proved hard to use.


However, a team from Hamburg, Germany seem to have found the answer in their innovative PaperJohn – the paper bag for cyclists. They have added novel handles to the traditional design which essentially turns the paper bag into a backpack. This isn’t just great for cyclists, it’s also the perfect design for anyone who likes to walk to and from the shops.

Of course, the PaperJohn isn’t just a normal paper bag with additional handles. It is much sturdier than a typical paper bag, having been specially engineering to cope with heavier loads. The general paper density is 90 g/m2, but the PaperJohn uses a much high density – 120 g/m2 – to ensure that the bouncing caused by cycling won’t cause the bag to rip and your purchases to spill out.

It also boasts a heavy block-bottom to reinforce the base, and the straps are made from four-ply strips which run along the hold length of the body to ensure that they won’t tear off. The designers behind this fun and practical paper bag rucksack hope that it will allow ‘more people to enjoy the benefits of eco-friendly paper bags.’ As an added benefit, the PaperJohn can be branded just as easily as other paper bags, so logos can be printed on by shops and businesses in order to promote themselves.

Of course, as part of the green solution, the PaperJohn is made of 100% biodegradable Kraft paper, so they can easily be recycled and reused. Printing methods are also environmentally-friendly, so branding can be completed without business owners having to worry about making the paper harmful to the planet.

It’s always interesting to see the ways in which people are taking old ideas and reinventing them for the modern age – and the PaperJohn is a fantastic example.

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