clear compostable biodegradable packaging supplies
It is becoming increasingly difficult to source home compostable film for our clear biodegradable display bags, and it seems that the industry standard, and most accessible material is now Nativia ® film, a clear, compostable, biodegradable, vegan friendly bio film (PLA) manufactured in the uk, which is best suited to industrial composting.
Nativia® bio film is still certified according to the EN13432 standard and have achieved the OK BIOBASED certificate from Vincotte, which means they are still plastic free and compostable.
it just does not hold the OK compost HOME standard (2003) – basically, it’s not guaranteed to break down in the UK in your garden composting system inside of the 6 month standard.
**Enough of the jargon – read more about the certifications mentioned above here**
what is Nativia ® film?
Nativia is made up of a mixture of (vegan friendly) vegetable starches and and wood pulp (or cellulose) – our glassine bags are 100% cellulose (or 100% paper, which is biodegradable, compostable and recyclable)
whilst Nativia® is certified compostable to the highest standards, the words compostable and biodegradable are often confusing to the end user. most would assume that if a product is compostable or biodegradable it will just ‘disappear’ leaving little to no impact (like our glassine bags). however for the guaranteed ‘break down’ of these PLAs to take place, most products need to be industrially composted in specialist plants, which is the recommended method of disposal for Nativia®.
our previous stocks were suitable for home composting, which meant they would breakdown in accordance with the OK compost HOME standards.
how to dispose of clear Nativia ® compostable bags
Nativia ® film should be placed in a black bin, or can be disposed of in food waste or garden waste, but you will need to check with your local council, and independent tests have shown that the film has degraded in a home composting system in the UK, in 12 months – however since it takes longer than the 6 months required to achieve the OK compost HOME certification, we can no longer classify this product as home compostable
what’s the difference between home composting & industrial composting?
home composting occurs in your back garden, some people purchase compost bins to dispose of their own household organic waste, and some people, if they have a big enough garden, have compost heaps.
industrial composting takes place in specialist plants, applying a much higher heat, which accelerates the process.
home composting = low temperature, product doesn’t break down as quickly
industrial composting = hotter, quicker breakdown
home compostable products carry a OK compost HOME certification, which guarantees they break down in a certain amount of time, including in a home compost bin.
Why does this all matter so much?!
with the rise in demand for eco friendly packaging solutions, we feel it’s important to highlight the change to our products, and ensure we give you, the consumer, all the information to make sustainable choices. whether you decide to go for a paper based product, a PLA or even a recyclable product.
XOandQuin pride ourselves on our eco friendly credentials, we feel that the most important part of our ethos is to provide, easy to understand guidance on how to choose the right product for you and your business or eco friendly party needs!
here in the UK we currently have limited access to industrial composting, XOandQuin have always felt that the look of clear compostable display bags, can be misleading to the end user, many people I would assume add these to main stream recycling (where councils offer a mixed recycling option).
PLAs can NOT be recycled, adding them to recycling can cause the whole stream to become ‘tainted’. most of our clear compostable biodegradable packaging supplies now have printed lips that read “this bag is made in the UK from EN13432 compostable PLA” – however we do recommend adding an additional sticker to further inform end users on how to dispose of the product.
our glassine products are made from pure pine cellulose (100% PEFC certified paper from pine trees) – paper is recyclable, compostable and biodegradable. if disposed of in a black bin, it will break down and leave no residue….eventually. if in doubt our glassine is the most environmentally friendly packaging option on the market and the easiest to dispose of.
Please note that each country will have different regulations and standards. this post is aimed at the UK market
- 2011 Concise guide to Compostable Products and Packaging – published by REA (the association for renewable energy and technology) formerly association for organics recycling
- TÜV Austria – certifying body for bioplastics