Hiding in plain sight, talc is part of our everyday lives

You can find talc almost anywhere you look. In plastic items, paints, various packaging materials and paper. On the surface of granular fertilizers to prevent caking. For most people, talc means baby powder but it is just one of many applications.

“Kids, do you know which items at home contain talc?”

When we wake up in the morning, prepare breakfast and sit down to eat, we interact with items that contain talc, including light switches, paint surfaces, water and sewage pipes, food and beverage packages – even the newspaper.

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“In the car? Really?”

Our encounters with talc continue throughout the day, like when we sit behind the wheel. It’s contained in the plastic parts of the car – dashboard, interior panels, bumpers and many other parts. About 20-kilos worth in total.

Talc is used for its special properties

The softest mineral on earth, talc easily forms platy particles when grinded. It’s inert and does not react with acids or bases. It’s also organophilic, combining easily with organic compounds and substances. In short, talc is a functional additive or filler in applications, improving the quality or properties of the goods we use.

As customers, we are increasingly aware of the consequences of our choices, and this factors in our decisions. It is important to us that our goods are procured ethically and with respect to human rights and the environment.

We at Nordic Talc want to help our future clients achieve the goals set for them by the consumers. Our talc will be traceable and ethically produced, and we minimize the environmental impact and carbon footprint of our production and supply chain. We are committed to the UN Global Compact corporate sustainability initiative and its Ten Principles as well as the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

PLASTICS – Improves the physical properties of household plastic goods, automotive plastic parts, and pipes. Talc can amount to dozens of percents of product mass.

PAINTS AND PUTTIES – In paints, talc improves opacity, shelf life, and weather and corrosion resistance. Talc is also used as a replacement for titanium dioxide. In putties, talc is an excellent filler because of its sanding properties.

Typical applications of talc

PAPER AND PACKAGING – Traditional applications include the pulp and paper industry. In the pulp industry talc is used as an anti-resin agent and in paper industry both as a filler and coating pigment. Talc can also be used in beverage and food packages as a barrier material.

OTHERS – Talc is also used in, for example, granular fertilizer to prevent caking, as a filler and coating additive in the rubber industry, and as a mineral ingredient in ceramics.

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Why talc is produced

Minerals are required to meet the challenges of green transition and battling climate change and biodiversity loss. Europe is not self-sufficient in talc, and we need local, responsible and traceable talc for the industry producing our goods.

Talc is primarily used to improve product properties or replace other raw materials. For example, when talc is used to reinforce plastics parts in the automotive industry, those plastic parts can then replace metal parts, leading to lighter vehicles and energy savings and therefore helping with emission reduction goals.