Bioplastics are a diverse family of materials with differing properties that fall within three main groups.
Start of life bio-based materials derive from living matter, such as corn, sugar, starch, and potatoes, instead of conventional fossil-based plastics.
End of life biodegradable or oxo-degradable, as they are often known, degrade under certain conditions using additives that accelerate degradation by breaking plastic down into tiny flake fragments. This process only facilitates fragmentation and does not fully degrade the plastic with the resulting microplastics remaining in the environment. The use of materials such as these can shorten the lifespan of a pack’s contents.
Start of life and end of life bio-based and biodegradable are often derived from corn starch-based, potato starch-based polymers and other plant-based raw materials. These plastics degrade in domestic or industrial composting processes in specific time scales into biomass, Co2 and water. The use of materials such as these can also shorten the lifespan of a pack’s contents.
what are the benefits of bioplastics?
Bio-based plastics reduce dependency on fossil resources
The use of bio-based plastics reduce carbon footprint
Bio-based plastics enable the reclamation of by-products
Bio-based plastics do not increase atmospheric CO2
Sustainable packaging without compromise
Spectra’s sugarcane-based biopolymer HDPE and PET materials are produced using ethanol from sugarcane as opposed to conventional HDPE and PET which traditionally contain fossil-based raw materials such as oil or natural gas.
The renewable sugarcane captures CO2 from the atmosphere, helping to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Unlike regular biopolymers, which can’t be recycled without damaging the recycling chain, Spectra’s biopolymers are recyclable. These bio-based materials provide a genuine direct replacement for standard HDPE and PET – perfect for a truly sustainable packaging solution.
Those customers concerned about compromising the end result can rest assured that biopolymers maintain the same chemical properties as conventional oil-based HDPE and PET. This means there is no difference in performance or appearance to the end result, meaning you can make a difference without seeing a difference.
Proudly display the ‘I’m green’ logo to show your packaging is sustainably made
Many brands are now adopting sugarcane-based materials in their product lines. To help consumers identify products that use such materials, brands using HDPE biopolymer can display the “I’m green” trade-mark seal on their packaging to let consumers make informed decisions when buying specific products.