As a consumer, or purchaser, of sustainable products you have probably come across many different “green” marketing practices sometimes known as greenwashing. One term that is commonly used to signify a "sustainable" item is biodegradable. But what does biodegradable mean, and is that label a good indication of a sustainable item?
Biodegradable simply means that something will be broken down over time. However, this is true for most materials in our world today. Styrofoam, for example, will eventually break down....in about 500 years! The label biodegradable tells us nothing about much time it'll take for that item to break down, what basic components it'll break down into, or what resources were used to manufacture the item. In short, the label biodegradable is essentially useless and holds no significance in how sustainable a product is. Those tricky greenwashers!
Biodegradable does not equal compostable! Why? Because the label biodegradable doesn't give us insight into what raw materials make up the item in question (and what raw materials it'll eventually be broken down into). These items may be made of raw materials, such as plastics, that would disqualify them from the composting process. As such, these materials need to be sent to landfills.
For a product to be labeled compostable, it must meet the three following strict requirements:
In summary, these items will be consumed by microbes and turned into nutrient-rich compost once they go through the composting process!
Most items that are labeled as compostable are only suitable to be composted in a commercial composting facility. CompostNow can accept these items as we ultimately get your compostables to your local commercial composting facility.
Looking for compostable serviceware for your home? Check out our quarantine kits on our store: https://store.compostnow.org/collections/frontpage/products/compostable-party-kit
Looking for compostable serviceware for your business? Check out our wholesale offering:https://compostnow.gogecko.com/