BUBBLE WRAP PART 2
Finding an alternative to bubble wrap - The last leg in removing consumable plastic from the Schofield offices.
Here are some of our discoveries so far.
There are now various new varieties of eco-bubble wrap. Some are bio-degradable, taking 18 months to biodegrade fully from first exposure to sunlight. Some take longer. These products biodegrade into biomass and water, releasing carbon into the atmosphere. Although an improvement on traditional bubble wrap, these products are still oil based and synthetic making them unsustainable in the long run as well as adding to carbon emissions in the atmosphere.
Green wrap is another ready-made substitute for bubble wrap fabricated from recycled cardboard and tissue. Perfect for certain uses and fully uses only recycled materials.
Then there are companies like ‘Leavs’ who have created sustainable, organic eco packaging alternatives to oil based synthetic products. The majority of materials used in Leavs Packaging are grown on its South Norfolk farm to the highest environmental standards.
Greencell and other similar companies use PLAs (Polylactic acid), a plastic substitute made from fermented plant starch (usually corn) as a replacement for oil based plastics to produce a variety of foam wraps, bags and foam padding. There are, however, numerous problems associated with the production of PLAs. PLAs de-compost very slowly unless subjected to industrial composting. They generally use genetically modified corn, PLa cannot be mixed with other plastics and so a whole infrastructure of recycling on an industrial scale would need to be created. There are also many problems associated with corn production which are too numerous to discuss here.
Other more appealing alternatives include using popcorn as a replacement for foam peanuts, recycling paper and cardboard as packaging materials, as well as cushion packaging made from one hundred percent post-consumer waste paper. The search continues…