Switch to eco-conscious plastic alternatives for the 2025 national packaging targets

Saturday, 01 October, 2022

Switch to eco-conscious plastic alternatives for the 2025 national packaging targets

Our use of plastic is increasing, and across the world it is predicted to double by 2040. The current rate of plastic recycling in Australia is approximately 13%, with more than 85% ending up in landfill and generating plastic waste.

Addressing the plastic packaging issue, the federal government introduced the 2021 National Plastic Plan, understanding that the entire plastic life cycle needs an overhaul, and plastic packaging needs to be designed to be reused, recycled, and recovered.

Part of the plan is the 2025 national packaging targets, where all packaging needs to be 100% reusable, recyclable or compostable. This means it’s a critical time for organisations to start thinking now about their packaging and plastic needs, to start planning and switching to alternatives that will meet government targets.

Some of these targets will require significant changes within industry or require substantial new infrastructure to be built to collect and reprocess the used plastic. Some of the targets are small steps only, as their challenges are very complicated. For example, the recycling rate of soft plastic to go from unknown to 10%. All these factors mean that there is going to be a lot of plastic waste for many years into the future.

Buyer beware — what does the “green” label mean?

The labelling of “biodegradable” plastic products is often green-washing and open to marketing manipulation. Many products labelled as “compostable’, “degradable” or “oxo-degradable” offer no more environmental benefits than a regular plastic bag, in fact, they could be more harmful to the environment, for example, a “degradable” plastic fragments into little pieces.

How Biogone’s innovative technology is different

Melbourne-based business, Biogone, is leading plastic technology in Australia with an organic additive to help plastic biodegrade at an accelerated rate when it’s disposed to a modern landfill. Co-founders John Mancarella and Ross Headifen believe if single-use plastics must be used, then they should be made to be recyclable in line with the 2025 national packaging targets, plus biodegrade where they will be disposed of — which could be in a landfill if they are not recycled.

The difference between Biogone plastic and conventional plastic is when the plastic is disposed to landfill. The Biogone organic additive is a special food source for microbes and is mixed with the raw plastic material at product formation time. The naturally occurring microbes in landfill seek out the food and start to digest it. The enzymes the microbes secrete in that process, breaking the surface polymer chains down so the microbes can then digest them too.

Biogone plastic biodegrades at approximately 90% faster than conventional plastic, breaking down to a humus like sludge (an excellent soil conditioner).  No air or sunlight is required, so the biodegradation can occur in landfill. A conventional plastic takes hundreds of years to break down, while slowly releasing the biogas to the atmosphere. The accelerated biodegradation rate of Biogone plastic means the methane gas is released over a much shorter time.

Biogone plastic is recyclable with other soft plastics and retains all its original mechanical properties, such as strength, colour, impermeability, shelf life and recyclability and does not fragment to microplastics.

How can Biogone help my business become more responsible?

Biogone offers a wide range of cost-effective landfill-biodegradable everyday plastic products, helping businesses make the switch to more eco-friendly plastic alternatives.

Biogone believes they have the best solution until we advance the plastic recycling industry and move towards a more complete circular economy.

Explore the Biogone product range at biogone.com.au so your business can work towards meeting and even exceeding the 2025 National Packaging Targets.

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