Thermoforming Report

“Plastic Packaging Paradox”

This article was a quick read and highlights a few key nuggets that generate pause on all the noise we hear about plastics being bad.

“And once you start looking into plastic packaging, this kind of counterintuitive conclusion comes up all the time. Some packaging is a foolish waste. But are shrink-wrapped cucumbers really so silly if it means they stay fresh for 14 days rather than 3?”

Food waste due to spoilage is rarely discussed in the context of packaging. Yet the technology that reduces that waste is overlooked.

“About a decade ago, one UK supermarket experimented with taking all its fruit and vegetables out of their packaging – and its food wastage rate doubled.”

And, just when we are led to believe there is a better solution…

“If you’ve bought sturdy, reusable bags from your supermarket, it’s likely they’re made from non-woven polypropylene – and they are less damaging, but only if you use them at least 52 times.

That’s according to a report by the Danish government, which weighed up the varied environmental impacts of producing and disposing of different kinds of bag.

And if your reusable bag is organic cotton, don’t feel smug – the researchers reckon they need 20,000 uses to justify themselves. That’s a shopping trip every day for over half a century.”

I’ve mentioned in the past that there is tremendous complexity that exists in the plastics world – from how it is manufactured, to its end use, how – and if – it is recycled, and the infrastructure piece to get it to where it can be re-used.

The more informed we are the better decisions we will be able to make. It won’t be easy but there are a lot of very smart people already working on solutions.

My two cents for what it’s worth. Thoughts?

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