Here at Tri-pack, we have been banging this drum for a while. In recent years, the press has damaged the plastics industry beyond repair with it’s headlines and ocean polluting imagery. While protecting our environment is a hot topic, it is also one of great importance to the future of both our planet and future generations of animal and mankind. Yet, many of the articles have been littered with false claims and very little education.
On January 9th 2020, The BBC, published a controversial argument; headling that the “plastic packaging ban could harm the environment“. The article goes on to assess responses to public anxiety about plastic polluting the oceans and alludes that in the panic of tarnishing all plastic as bad, there has been little substantial research into resolving the issue. This is a huge breakthrough for those within the packaging industry and who understand the real issue at hand.
Supermarkets and suppliers have been switching away from plastic packaging in favour of a more ‘eco-friendly’ option.
Yet limited proof is behind these alternatives as to whether or not they are a more superior packaging option. Glass, for example, is “heavier than plastic so far more polluting to transport“. Paper bags “have higher carbon emissions than plastic bags – and are more difficult to re-use“. As for recyclable coated cartons, in the UK we are only equipped to recycle just a “third of those in circulation“. While we are not skirting around the fact that the single-use plastic is bad, but these eco-options are certainly not resolving the issue either.
Plastic remains the most effective material
In August 2019, Tri-pack published an article entitled “The Good Plastic” this reported on the benefits of plastic in our lives and how we cannot actually live without it. It also called upon the press to take an understanding of the industry, the different types of plastic and realise that not all plastic is damaging. Plastic has a place in our world. Recycling it is the matter which needs to be addressed. As reported by the BBC “Plastic remains the most effective material in many circumstances – for example cucumbers wrapped in plastic last 14 days longer, reducing food waste.”
From the Green Alliance – Plastic Promise report it is clear to see that the public simply wants to be educated, not bombarded with shocking images; by confusing consumers, this is “potentially causing more problems.” A clear guide needs to be formed by those in the know about what packaging is right for what product. Those which are actually creating a larger carbon footprint than plastic or creating more waste should be tarnished with the same brush.
More recycling needs to be at the forefront of the government’s incentives, along with these clear guidelines for suppliers and supermarkets to follow, making it easier for the public to make a conscious and correct decision regarding both eco-friendly packaging and how to effectively dispose of it.
Here at Tri-pack we really feel that the tides are changing with the news outlets and hopefully this is the first of many educating reports which will start to benefit the planet.