The Plastic Problem and a Compostable Future.

Plastics are a polarising subject. They have been pivotal in shaping modern industry, they are cheap, extremely versatile, and they have been put to use extensively in almost every corner of every industry. As a result, plastic production has skyrocketed, with the annual total expected to reach 622 million tonnes by 2034, up from 311 million tonnes in 2014. 

However, you can have too much of a good thing, and that is most certainly the case with plastic. 95% of packaging is used only once and then discarded, primarily in various packaging formats. And an enormous 32% of all plastic manufactured escapes collection. Of that 32% a staggering 8 million tonnes end up in our oceans every year. The production of plastics also has a material effect on carbon emissions and thus climate change. Every year plastic production represents the same amount of oil usage as the entire aviation sector. 

Clearly, we have a significant problem. Thankfully this issue is starting to come to light and some incremental improvements are starting to be made.

In recent months, much has been made of the issue with plastic straws and plastic checkout bags, and they have become the visible face of the problems caused by single-use plastics. And as a result we’re seeing a number of large and noteworthy businesses make public commitments to materially changing their practices.  

This is obviously a great start to generating awareness and driving some positive change from some of the biggest users / polluters. But it only scratches the surface of the problem, that being that single use plastics proliferate well beyond those two items that have received the bulk of the recent publicity.

They are in almost everything we touch; the average supermarket stocks 40,000 items and the majority of those are wrapped in plastic of some description, most items purchased online come in varying forms plastic bags / wrap, almost every item of takeaway food packaging is either made of or lined with plastic, and the list goes on.

For all the harm they create, plastics are commonly used for a reason, that being they’re cost effective and versatile nature that can add value to different parts of the supply chain. Our plan at Plantmade Packaging is to gradually replace the use of oil based plastics throughout commercial production and retail environments.  And we have a wide range of fully compostable, flexible packaging solutions, to begin to tackle the problem. These solutions canvas a broad scope of use in food manufacturing, apparel, retail, coffee and numerous others industries.

Flexible compostable packaging alternatives represent a significant step towards removing oil-based plastics in commercial production & delivery situations. Commonly known as bioplastics, these compostable packaging solutions are made from organic biomass sources unlike conventional plastics.

To talk to us about a more sustainable packaging solution for your business, send us an email at