Why Plastic Packaging Can Be Good for the Environment

When it comes to packaging for food items, many consumers think that paper and cardboard are more environmentally friendly options than plastic. However, a closer look reveals this is actually a common misconception. Let's take a look at some reasons why we should be reconsidering plastic packaging as an ecological option.

Plastic is manufactured from oil and takes a long time to biodegrade, which leads many people to think it is always bad for the environment. However, plastic has many 'green' qualities:

  • Plastic takes less energy to manufacture than paper and cardboard, resulting in fewer emissions of greenhouse gases over the lifetime of the packaging.
  • Plastic can be recycled many times.
  • Plastic products that have been contaminated with food can still be recycled.
  • Plastic protects food products better than alternative packaging materials, leading to less wastage.

Strawberries in a plastic tray

Meanwhile, paper and cardboard have their limitations:

  • Trees are cut down to make paper and cardboard, not always from sustainable forests.
  • There is a limit to the number of times that paper can be recycled.
  • Paper and cardboard that has been contaminated with food cannot be recycled. Even paper and cardboard that has been stored with contaminated packaging can become unusable.
  • Paper and cardboard packaging are easily damaged by water and can be chewed through by pests such as rats.

There is no single best answer to packaging. All types of materials can work as packaging - even edible packaging is growing in popularity. However, plastic should certainly not be ruled out on the grounds that it is less ecological than its rivals. With proper recycling procedures in place, there is no reason why plastic should be heading to landfill.

At Coda Plastics, we're committed to reducing our impact on the environment. We re-use over 90% of any waste we produce, and can produce PET bottles from recycled materials. Get in touch with us if you want an environmentally conscious company to create your plastic packaging. You can email us at sales@coda-plastics.co.uk or call us on +44 1692 501020.

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