For many years plastic packaging, in general, has caused great controversy. Recently, the Daily Mail published a thought-provoking article, which is one of few reports available in recent years which proclaims plastic packaging to be good and beneficial.
A London based firm has developed a plastic packaging solution for wine bottles which is designed to help reduce carbon emissions associated with deliveries. This, much like Tri-pack’s flat-pack plastic packaging boxes, certainly feels like a step in the right direction for an eco-friendly packaging solution. Yet in the sea of negative articles published on a daily basis, it appears controversial that plastic is now appearing as a positive packaging material.
The same news outlet also recently published an article suggesting that businesses who have been swapped plastic to ‘eco-friendly packaging‘ alternatives is not actually benefiting the environment. Education appears to be the underlying factor in all of these press releases. Yet, also appears to be continuously missed. Whether we are discussing plastic, wood or paper, the material is not ultimately always to blame. Much as the innovative wine bottle idea appears great on the surface, it is only environmentally friendly if the used product is disposed of correctly. A 100% recyclable product is only as good as the end-user.
This is very much the same for replacing plastic bags with paper bags or plastic cutlery with wooden cutlery, if these more environmentally friendly solutions still end up in general waste, the problem still persists.
While here at Tri-pack we are in full support of alternatives to single-use plastic, the problem needs addressing effectively. There is no clear difference in the media between ‘plastic’ and ‘single-use’ plastic and therefore all plastics are tarnished with the same brush.
The stress of these articles certainly needs to be focused on disposal and recycling. If every one of these eco-friendly wine bottles is correctly recycled then we applaud the idea and certainly feel it is a step forward. But how can this be monitored and what is the government doing to help enforce strict recycling policies for both businesses and individuals? It is too easy for all waste to end up in general waste and therefore landfill, which is a continuous vicious cycle.