By Mark Shaw, NPD Technical Manager Parkside Flexibles

 

What does “Biodegradable” mean

Biodegradable describes a material which will decompose back into natural elements. Arguably however most things biodegrade over time – for example a garden bench made out of solid wood is designed to strong and robust and last for many years but this can still be classed as biodegradable as it will breakdown over time. Time is the key differentiator, when “Biodegradable” terminology is used it gives a material an unlimited time span in which to breakdown from a few weeks to a few decades.

 

What does “Compostable” mean

For a product to be classed as compostable it must also be able to breakdown naturally back into its natural elements Water, Co2 and Biomass. However they have to breakdown under specific composting conditions in set time scales.

Our packaging is designed to compost at ambient temperatures in a home compost environment within 26 Weeks. It is independently tested and accredited to ensure it meets the EU standard EN13432 for composting. To gain accreditation our packaging under goes strict testing for chemical analysis, biodegradation, disintegration and eco-toxicity. This ensure the pack will breakdown in set time frames in set conditions with no negative affect on the final compost.

 

Conclusion

Both “Biodegradable” and “Compostable” products breakdown back into natural elements but accredited “Compostable” products are independently tested and accredited to ensure they breakdown under set conditions and time frames and are non-toxic to the environment.

Always look out for the OK Compost Home logo on the pack for assurance that your packaging will Home compost.