Workers scoop up dung from a Sumatran elephant at Taman Safari in Bogor, West Java, last Wednesday, Feb. 28. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)

Poo Paper

BY : YUDHA BASKORO

MARCH 04, 2019

Bogor. Apart from entertaining families with their collection of endangered animals, Taman Safari Park in Bogor, West Java, has another line of business: producing environmentally friendly, biodegradable paper made from elephant dung called, appropriately, the Safari Poo Paper.

Taman Safari has a herd of 50 Sumatran elephants whose droppings are processed into paper everyday. According to Iwan Setiawan, a worker at Safari Poo Paper, each elephant eats 250 kilograms of grass and other fibrous plant each day and most of it passes through their bodies undigested.

An adult Sumatran elephant can produce up to two tons of droppings each day that will make 4000 sheets of standard paper (A3 size). The quality is comparable to normal paper made from tropical timber and so is the price.

The first step in making Safari Poo Paper is cleaning the elephant dung and then drying it until the color turns brown. Clean dung is mixed with scrap paper and the mixture boiled into pulp. Just like normal pulp paper, the elephant dung pulp is then put through moulds and then dried again into the final product.

Elephants are a protected species in Indonesia. According to WWF Indonesia, there are only around 2400 to 2800 Sumatran elephants (Elephas maximus sumatranus) left in the wild. The greatest threat to their existence remains poaching. Many Sumatran elephants are being hunted, poisoned and shot for their tusks.

A worker scooped up elephant dung at Taman Safari elephant park on Wednesday (27/02) in Bogor, West Java. Since its opening in November 2012, the factory has transformed tons of elephant dung into recycled paper. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
The Safari Poo Paper factory was opened in November 2012. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
Piles of dung are picked up by elephant park worker in Taman Safari at Bogor, West Java on Wednesday (27/02) Elephant dung turns out to be an excellent source because the faeces, which is full of grass and other plant fibre can
Elephant dung is mostly grass and other fibrous plants that pass through an elephant's stomach undigested. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
Elephant park worker is making sure that every elephant in a healthy and very good condition in Taman Safari, Bogor, West Java on Wednesday (27/02) Elephant health is very important because it will affect the shape of the stool. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
A Taman Safari staff performs a health check on a Sumatran elephant. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
A worker conducts a routine check of the Safari Poo Paper compost facility in Bogor, West Java on Wednesday (27/02) Everyday the facility produces 4000 sheet of paper from two tons of dung. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
The Safari Poo Paper factory processes two tons of elephant dung into 4000 paper sheets every day. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
Worker boils and disinfects elephant dung in Safari Poo Paper in Bogor, West Java on Wednesday (27/02) Elephants are big eaters and they only digest 40-50% of what they eat. It takes two hours to boil the dung perfectly. (JtG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
Disinfecting elephant dung is done by boiling. It takes two hours to complete. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
Safari park workers bring bucket full of pulp to a paper molding tools in Safari Poo Paper, at Bogor, West Java on Wednesday (27/02) (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
Elephant dung pulp is ready to be thrown into moulds. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
Safari Poo Paper workers are drying up a paper in Taman Safari, Bogor, West Java on Wednesday (27/02) With around 50 elephants at the park, it is easy for the Safari Poo Paper to create 4000 sheets of A3 sized paper every day. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
Safari Poo Paper being dried. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
Safari Poo Paper workers are drying up a paper in Taman Safari, Bogor, West Java on Wednesday (27/02) Elephant dung every day will be made into books, envelopes, photo papers, and invitation cards (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
Safari Poo Paper is made into books, envelopes, photo papers and invitation cards (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
Elephant dung paper bank in Safari Poo Paper at Bogor, West Java on Wednesday (27/02) The paper must be saved under a shady warm light to maintain it quality. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
Elephant dung paper must be stored in semi-darkness to maintain its quality. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
Safari Poo Paper visitors take a look on a photos printed in a elephant dung paper in Taman Safari, Bogor, West Java on Wednesday (27/02) The movement of making paper from elephant dung is a motivations to preserve and protect elephants from poaching. Many Sumatran elephants are being hunted -- poisoned or shot -- for their tusks. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
Taman Safari visitors inspect a photograph printed on elephant dung paper. (JG Photo/Yudha Baskoro)
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