WIST is an institute within the College of Natural Resources at UW-Stevens Point

WIST  News
July 2014
In This Issue
Speakers announced for Focal Point
WIST welcomes papermaking specialist to staff
Intro to LCA offered in September
Hazelnut shows promise as oilseed crop
Research, Education, and Laboratory Services

pilot paper machine 




WIST provides laboratory services, research and education to create sustainability solutions for businesses and organizations. Technology and ideas developed by WIST and its partners will spur economic growth in Wisconsin and the region and help all of us preserve a healthy environment for future generations.

Follow-up Links


Annual Report October 2013 


First speakers announced
for WIST packaging conference
We're pleased to announce the first speakers in a top-notch line-up of presenters for Focal Point 2014. These industry experts, along with several additional presenters yet to be confirmed, will discuss efforts to evidence sustainable sourcing of feedstocks, advances in production techniques, developments in specialty packaging materials, and end-of-life management challenges and choices. Conference registration is now open.
Confirmed speakers are:
  • Nicole Bookhout, National Account Executive, Placon
  • Robyn Buma, Global Procurement Director, Paper, Avery Dennison Materials Group
  • Daniel Daggett, Director, Product Stewardship and Sustainability, Sealed Air Corporation
  • Tim Haggerty, Plant Director - LeHigh Valley, PA, Ocean Spray Cranberries, Inc.
  • James Kahn, Commercial Manager, Braskem
  • Michele Riggs, Biodegradable Technical Specialist/Environmental Technician, Cedar Grove Compost, Inc.
  • Shawn Stevens, Attorney/Equity Partner at Gass Weber Mullins
Focal Point 2014: Packaging at the Leading Edge will target the latest challenges and solutions in packaging and converting right across the value chain. The conference provides networking opportunities throughout the day. We'll be providing more programming details in upcoming emails, but you don't have to wait to register for this value-packed conference. An early bird discount is now available.
Dreyfus University Center, UWSP, site of Focal Point 2014
New papermaking specialist
on staff at WIST
Lindsey Hoffman
WIST welcomes Lindsey Hoffman as the institute's laboratory and papermaking project specialist. Hoffman is a 2014 graduate of the UW-Stevens Point with a bachelor's degree in paper science & engineering and a minor in chemistry.
At WIST, Hoffman oversees the work performed on the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point pilot paper machine and the paper testing provided by the Wisconsin Institute for Sustainable Technology. She also coordinates student and contract work, along with providing support for the Paper Science & Engineering undergraduate program.
Introduction to Life Cycle Assessment with
Prof. Karyn Biasca
Karyn Biasca
Dr. Karyn Biasca
Life cycle assessment is increasingly recognized as a valuable tool in measuring total environmental effects of creating, using and disposing of a product or service. This six-hour course, offered September 12 at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point, is an introductory course on life cycle assessment (LCA), product category rules (PCR) and environmental product declarations (EPD). You will gain an understanding of the scope, challenges and possibilities in applying life cycle assessment to decision-making processes.
Dr. Karyn Biasca, chair of the Paper Science & Engineering Department at UW-Stevens Point, has extensively studied LCA, has taught basic LCA courses for five years and has co-taught a graduate-level LCA course at UW-Madison. She has also performed life cycle assessment work for several companies.
Previous attendees of this course have praised Biasca's knowledge and presentation skills:
"I always appreciate an instructor who is an expert but who is able to make things easy to understand."
"The course was easy to understand, easy to follow and thought-provoking."
"Karyn is very knowledgeable on this subject. Great sense of humor."
Researchers publish paper on promise of hazelnut as new cash crop
Dr. Mike Demchik
American hazelnut has potential as a new oilseed crop in the upper Midwest, according to UW-Stevens Point forestry professor Mike Demchik and fellow researchers, who recently published a paper on their work.
The paper, "Selection of American hazelnut as a potential oilseed crop," was published in the journal Agroforestry Systems, June 2014. The paper's authors are Michael Demchik, UW-Stevens Point; Jason Fischbach, UW Extension; Anthony Kern, Morningside College; James Lane, UW-Superior; Brent McCown, Eric Zeldin, UW-Madison; Keith Turnquist, UW-Stevens Point.
Interest is high in oilseed crops because of their potential economic impact. Compared to annual oilseed crops, perennial oil seed crops such as hazelnut can reduce potential environmental impacts to soil and water quality. Hazelnut oil is high in oleic acid, a monounsaturated fat, and is similar in oleic acid prevalence to olive oil.
The researchers conclude that, "With an excellent fatty acid profile and demonstrated high nutmeat yield potential, initial selections of American hazelnut from diverse wild populations in Minnesota and Wisconsin may be suitable to establish commercial hazelnut oil production in the Lakes States region of the United States."
The researchers are evaluating genetic variance within and between populations of hazelnut and determining optimum methods of selecting plants with desired characteristics for propagation. Another aspect of the research is determining best methods of propagation.
Demchik's research has been supported in part by WIST.