Plastics today are far more diverse than in the past, particularly in how people use and dispose of them. Modern packaging solutions, including biodegradable packaging, are more environmentally friendly and recyclable than ever. This means that packaging manufacturers can continue creating high-quality, budget-conscious products while consumers have the peace of mind that comes with using a product that won’t harm the environment.
Recycling technology is more advanced than ever, making recycling increasingly cost-effective and accessible for all types of materials, including plastic thermoforms. Because of their synthetic nature, plastics can be engineered to promote sustainability and reusability, which you see in products like PET packaging. PET plastics can be recycled and repurposed into entirely different items; for example, PET plastics are typically used to make water bottles but, after recycling, can be used to make a multitude of products. Through various methods of manipulation, plastic engineers can make these materials last longer, preventing them from ending up in landfills.
Recycling has advanced past one-size-fits-all strategies. Instead, plastics are divided into subcategories that define how they can be recycled and the extent to which they can be repurposed. To learn more about your plastic packaging, look for the recycling logo molded into the material. Inside the logo, you should see a number — this identifies the type of plastic. For example, PET plastics are labeled with a “1,” while HDPE plastics are labeled with a “2.” Depending on where you do your recycling, you may have to sort your plastics based on their labels, or this may be done at your local recycling plant.
The ever-changing field of biodegradable packaging development continues to introduce new eco-friendly technologies. Unlike completely synthetic materials and chemical compounds, biodegradable materials are repurposed and restructured natural compounds. These materials are ideal for companies committed to green-only products and practices and for those who wish to go beyond standard recycling practices.